Page last updated at 05:14 GMT, Wednesday, 14 July 2004 06:14 UK

Breast cancer re-screening offer

Breast cancer
Screening helps detect tumours early

More than 2,000 woman are being offered repeat breast cancer screening after the withdrawal of processing equipment from three hospitals in the North-East.

The move follows a case in France which cast doubt over the ability of the equipment to detect an abnormality called micro calcification.

In most women, this turns out to be harmless but in a small number it can be an early sign of breast cancer.

As a precaution, repeat mammograms are being offered to some women.

Bishop Auckland Hospital, Durham
Hexham General Hospital, Northumberland
Friarage Hospital, Northallerton, North Yorks

Those tested after June 2002 at Bishop Auckland, after July 2003 at Hexham General and after November 2003 at Friarage are being called back.

Since last month, alternative equipment has been used at the three hospitals.

National officials say no women tested as part of the national breast screening programme is affected.

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