1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer throughout their lifetime, but thanks to new technology, doctors are finding it sooner and smaller. Guthrie recommending yearly mammograms beginning at age 40.
“If you have a mammogram every year, you were doing the most you can to find that cancer early and get it treated. That’s when we want to find out is early so you can treat it,” Mary Beth Savino said.
In addition to the traditional 2-D mammogram, Guthrie is also recommending to all it’s patients a newer 3-D version with the ability to find cancers smaller than before.
“This is something that may have been not picked up possibly until next year on this patient which is a big deal for cancer to not be picked up for an additional year so that’s why this 3-D is so important,” Dr. Bau said.
As part of Guthrie’s new “High Risk Program”, each woman who comes in for a mammogram will also be asked a series of questions aimed at determining each patient’s level of risk. Depending on a woman’s score, she may also qualify for the next level of screening…Breast MRI.
That high risk program offering more tailored, personalized care for women with a family history and other risk factors. It all starts however with making and keeping your mammogram appointment.
“Come in and judge for yourself, if you come in here and do your mammogram and you hated it and you never want to have another one…that very rarely happens…and to save your life possibly it’s just so worth it,” Savino said.
Dianne West of Corning knows first hand the importance of regular check-ups. Just last year she was diagnosed with breast cancer, but because it was found so early, doctors were able to remove it with a minimally invasive surgery and radiation. No chemotherapy, no hair loss and today, Dianne sits before us cancer free.
“It was a little bit of a roller coaster but nowhere near what other women have gone through as far as the treatment and everything that they’ve had to experience and I feel very fortunate that my cancer was found very early,” West said.
Dianne using her story to encourage others to be proactive about their health.
“Get yourself checked, make sure you’re all right, have the peace of mind that you are ok. But if not, they can find it early, they can treat it early, and your chances of surviving are so much greater,” West said.