Monday, October 29, 2007

Mammograms are key to cancer detection

October is breast cancer awareness month and Hulston Cancer Center would like to remind all women over the age of 40 to get their annual mammogram.

The American Cancer Society estimates that 178,480 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed in the United States in 2007. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women, exceeded only by lung cancer. One in eight women will develop invasive breast cancer during her lifetime.

Signs and symptoms of breast cancer can include:
• new lump or mass
• generalized swelling of part of the breast
• skin irritation or dimpling
• nipple pain or retraction
• redness or scaliness of nipple or breast skin
• discharge other than milk.

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should see your health care provider immediately to determine whether or not cancer is present.

The best defense against breast cancer is early detection. It is recommended that all women, age 20 and older perform monthly breast self-examinations.

Women age 40 and over should get a screening mammogram annually and should continue to do so for as long as they are in good health.

The staff at Hulston Cancer Center want to remind employees that it’s important for health care workers to remember to take care of themselves.

The Breast Care Clinic at Hulston Cancer Center has opened new appointment times to help decrease waiting times. Call 269-INFO to schedule your mammogram today.