Figures show fewer women seeking regular mammograms

About three-fourths of central Indiana women have been getting recommended mammograms after the age of 40, but that number has declined slightly over the past few years.

The most recent U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistics show that the number of local women in that age group who have reported getting mammograms in the previous two years dropped from 77.7 percent in 2008 to 73.8 percent last year. That figure reflects women over 40 who live in the Indianapolis metropolitan area, including Johnson County.

The drop in central Indiana women older than 50 who got mammograms in the previous two years was even steeper, the statistics showed. About 81 percent of women in that age group had reported getting a mammogram sometime over the past two years in 2008, but that number declined to 76.6 percent two years ago.

Johnson County Health Department director of nursing Lisa DeVault said the sluggish economy likely was to blame. People lost jobs and their health insurance during that time and couldn’t afford preventive health care, she said.

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