Women's experiences with mammography screening through 6 years of participation—a longitudinal qualitative study Academic Article uri icon


  • In this article we explore women's experiences with 6 years of mammography screening. Regular and repeated mammography screening is promoted as an important tool for disease prevention among women worldwide. The purpose of the present study was to explore how continued participation in screening influences how women perceive screening and breast cancer. We carried out focus groups with 24 screening participants in 2003 and 2009. Our analysis highlights that while women were excited about the examination in 2003, it was perceived as routine in 2009. Waiting for the results became easier over the years, while stress related to receiving the results letter did not diminish. Knowledge of risk factors for breast cancer did not change. Personal risk assessment remained low, though high incidence of cancer among acquaintances suggested high risk for breast cancer among women in general. Analysis of participant experiences suggests that continuous participation in screening has led surveillance medicine to become a part of ordinary life.


publication date

  • 2015