18 News and Guthrie are teaming up this month to bring you the information you need to know during Breast Cancer Awareness month. Samantha Lantz continues our coverage with the story of one local woman’s diagnosis and the new technology doctors are using to find breast cancer earlier than ever before.
A few months ago, Margaret Zimmer went for what she thought was a routine yearly mammogram with the same mammographer she has seen for the past 25 years. This time however, would end up being different.
“I got a call that I needed to come back, they had seen something and needed to take a closer look and kind of in my heart I knew,” Margaret Zimmer, a breast cancer patient said.
Thanks to the new and improved technologies of 3-D mammography, Margaret’s cancer was found so early that she didn’t even need chemotherapy treatment. She had surgery to remove the tumor and was back to work 2 weeks later.
As she prepares to undergo radiation treatment, Margaret counts her blessings that things weren’t worse, and leans on her two sisters for support…Both breast cancer survivors themselves.
“This is a lifelong thing, I may be cured of cancer at that point but I’m going to be on medication for years so it’s something that is going to continue and obviously something I’m going to have to keep a very close watch on,” Margaret said.
Also there to help Margaret through her journey, is the medical team at Guthrie.
“The visits that I have, everything connects to the next and they just have their plan and we just kind of fall into it and just go from stop to stop. All of the doctors and nurses I’ve met have been fantastic, they are so kind and empathetic with the patients. They have seen enough of it, they know what you’re going through and they can feel that for you and help you through that so they have just all been fantastic,” Margaret said.
Now, Margaret is using her prognosis to inspire others to be proactive about their breast health.
“It’s not for me now, it’s for my daughter, my grand daughter’s, my nieces, it’s not about me now, my story is already in the works. Now it’s about everybody else and to get that message out of how important it is to have those mammograms and for early detection, how important that is for women,” Margaret said.
Be sure to stay tuned all month long as Samantha Lantz brings us more stories from doctors, patients, and survivors. For previous segments in this series as well as a link to resources in our area, check out the 18 Cares Breast Cancer Awareness section linked on our homepage.