The present study tested the prediction that counterfactual thinking (thoughts of if only&) provides a vivid means for women to imagine what
could have been done differently in hypothetical breast cancer scenarios for the protagonist to avoid their predicament.This should then encourage them
to adopt a more preventative approach to and take greater personal responsibility toward their own breast health.Women aged 50 and older (N=181) read either a standard pamphlet on mammography rescreening or one containing counterfactually framed scenarios.The latter depicted fictitious
women whose failure to have routine mammograms contributed to their diagnosis with advance-stage breast cancer.The counterfactual group subsequently indicated greater feelings of personal responsibility
for having mammograms at the recommended interval than the standard group, even when perceived effectiveness of early detection and
treatment were statistically controlled for. Our data suggest that messages utilising counterfactual thinking may be useful in augmenting the
mammography rescreening rate in Australia.