American Cancer Society says start mammograms at 45, not 40

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Mammograms Are Still the Top Breast Cancer Screening Tool

CHICAGO (AP) -- The American Cancer Society is revising its advice on when women should start getting mammograms and how often.

The update moves the society closer to guidelines from an influential task force that recommends starting routine screening at age 50.

It's not a one-size-fits-all recommendation. Both groups say women's preferences for when to be scanned should be considered.

Warning signs and risk factors of breast cancer:

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Warning signs and risk factors of breast cancer
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American Cancer Society says start mammograms at 45, not 40

Risk factors of breast cancer: obesity

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Risk factors of breast cancer: lack of exercise

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Risk factors of breast cancer: alcohol use

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Risk factors of breast cancer: an unhealthy diet

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Risk factors of breast cancer: smoking

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Common signs of breast cancer: a breast mass that is hard and/or irregular 

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Common signs of breast cancer: changes in the skin of the breast such as puckering, irritation, scaling, dimpling, redness or thickening

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Common signs of breast cancer: swelling of all or part of the breast, even with no specific lump

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Common signs of breast cancer: enlargement or swelling of the lymph nodes in the armpit area

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Common signs of breast cancer: nipple discharge, that is not breast milk

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Common signs of breast cancer: nipple retraction, which looks like a turning inward of the nipple

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The advice is for women at average risk of breast cancer. Doctors generally recommend more intensive screening for higher-risk women.

The update also drops a recommendation for routine physical breast exams by doctors.

The guidelines were published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Watch more coverage below:

When Should You Get a Mammogram?

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