Michigan 21st state to enact breast density notification law

 - breast density search patterns
(a) Lesion overlying the fibroglandular dense tissue in a low-density mammogram; (b) lesion outside the fibroglandular dense tissue in a low-density mammogram.
Source: Academic Radiology 2014;21:1386–1393

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed Michigan’s breast density bill, making his state the 21 st in the nation to enact breast density notification legislation.  The law goes into effect June 1, 2015.

According to the legislation, if a patient’s mammogram demonstrates dense breast tissue, that patient must receive notification that includes the following verbiage:

“Your mammogram shows that your breast tissue is dense. Dense breast tissue is very common and is not abnormal. However, dense breast tissue can make it harder to find cancer through a mammogram. Also, dense breast tissue may increase your risk for breast cancer. This information about the result of your mammogram is given to you to raise your awareness. Use this information to discuss with your health care provider whether other supplemental tests in addition to your mammogram may be appropriate for you, based on your individual risk. A report of your results was sent to your ordering physician. If you are self-referred, a report of your results was sent to you in addition to this summary.”

Michigan joins Ohio, Missouri, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Minnesota, Arizona, New Jersey Tennessee, Hawaii, Maryland, Alabama, Nevada, Oregon, North Carolina, Pennsylvania,Virginia, California, New York Texas, and Connecticut as states that have introduced breast density notification laws.

According to the Are You Dense breast density notification advocacy group, another eight states are expected to introduce density reporting legislation in 2015. The organization also expects federal breast density notification legislation to be introduced in Congress this year.