Updated: Oct 19, 2021
Every October, people all over the world show their support for those affected by breast cancer and much education and awareness is spread during the month. This all makes great strides in the fight against the disease but, breast cancer is a 24/7/365 fight for those who live with it. Memorial Hospital's Mammography and Chemotherapy teams are hear to support women (and men, yes they can get breast cancer too) every day of the year. There are also things you can do throughout the year to help prevent the disease.
One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, with more than 281,550 new cases expected in 2021, according to the American Cancer Society. Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers among American women and affects all races. 75% of those with breast cancer, have no family history of the disease.
There are lifestyle changes and preventative measures you can take to help reduce your risk of breast cancer, they include:
Performing a monthly self-breast exam
Being physically active
Maintaining a healthy weight
Don’t drink alcohol or limit the amount of alcohol you drink
If you are taking hormone replacement therapy or birth control pills, ask your doctor about the risks
Breastfeed your children, if possible
Know the Signs
Know the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and do a monthly self exam. If you notice any of the following, contact your doctor:
New lump in the breast or underarm (armpit).
Thickening or swelling of part of the breast.
Irritation or dimpling of breast skin.
Redness or flaky skin in the nipple area or the breast.
Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area.
Nipple discharge other than breast milk, including blood.
Any change in the size or the shape of the breast.
Pain in any area of the breast.
Keep in mind that these symptoms can happen with other conditions that are not cancer.
Mammograms are the best way to find breast cancer early. With early detection, the disease is more treatable. Talk to your doctor about scheduling a mammogram, especially if you may be at high risk. The American Cancer Society recommends screening at the following ages:
Women ages 40 to 44 should have the choice to start annual breast cancer screening with mammograms if they wish to do so.
Women age 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year.
Women 55 and older can continue yearly screening, and should speak with their provider about switching to mammograms every 2 years.
Memorial Hospital is pleased to offer our patients the Genius™ 3D Mammography™ exam. Available on a Selenia® Dimensions® system from Hologic, it is revolutionizing how breast cancer is detected by providing a better option for women of all breast densities compared to 2D alone. Researchers have found that:
The Genius™ 3D Mammography™ exam finds 20-65% more invasive breast cancers compared to 2D alone, an average increase of 41%.
Only the Genius™ 3D Mammography™ exam is FDA approved as superior for women with dense breasts compared to 2D alone.
The Genius™ 3D Mammography™ exam reduces callbacks by up to 40% compared to 2D alone.
Support & Healing
When times do get tough, you aren't alone. Memorial Hospital's Infusion and Chemotherapy Center is here for you throughout the treatments, the healing, and the fight. The highly trained nurses and providers offer compassionate care in a tranquil and accommodating environment, where one can relax while receiving treatment close to home. And when you have finished your treatments, Memorial's team of nurses and doctors celebrate with you as you ring "The Bell".