WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representatives Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) and Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) introduced the Breast Density and Mammography Reporting Act today. The bill would help raise awareness of breast cancer risks and ensures the information women and their health care providers receive after a mammogram includes a patient’s relative breast density.

“As the son and brother of breast cancer survivors, I understand the impact of this disease on families throughout our community,” said Fitzpatrick. “The fight against cancer is one that transcends politics and I am proud to join Congresswoman DeLauro this Breast Cancer Awareness Month in advocating for increased access to information about breast cancer. By working together, we can pass common-sense bills that increase the quality of life and care for patients and ultimately put an end to the despicable disease.”

“By providing women with this simple piece of information, we can help women and their doctors make more informed decisions about their risks for developing breast cancer. This knowledge will help improve women’s chances for early detection and, ultimately, survival,” said DeLauro. “As a survivor of ovarian cancer who is only here today because my cancer was caught early, I know how important it is to be aware of your risks. Increased awareness means earlier detection, and that means more women will have a fighting chance against this terrible disease.”

Studies have shown that women with dense breast tissue, approximately 40 percent of the population, are at least four times more likely to develop breast cancer. Women with dense breast tissue are also more likely to have an inaccurate mammogram reading because of their tissue density. Only 40-50% of cancer in dense breast tissue is identified in a mammogram.

About 200,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer and more than 40,000 American women die from the disease annually.

Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Dean Heller (R-NV) are introducing a companion bill in the Senate.