Mammography is a routine screening procedure advised to check the health of the breasts. It helps in detecting tumors or lumps in the breasts that pose a risk of cancer.
A new study by researchers at Mount Sinai University has found that digital mammography can also predict the possibility of heart disease. They evaluated cardiovascular disease risk factors in around 292 women who had undergone digital mammography and a chest computed tomography (CT) scan.
Mammography detects the presence of calcium in the breast arteries which reflects the presence of calcium in the coronary arteries, that supply blood to the heart. Calcification of coronary arteries is an early sign of heart disease.
Further analysis showed that the presence of breast arterial calcium was about 70 percent accurate in predicting the presence of calcium in the coronary arteries.
Authors suggest that women should ask their doctors about calcification in their breasts after taking a mammogram as it can predict their heart disease risk and also help in undergoing further treatments.