October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and staff at St. Peter’s Health are reminding people to get screened regularly.
Women are encouraged to give themselves a monthly self-breast exam to check for irregularities and women more than 40 years old should get a mammogram every year.
“When women are doing their monthly breast-exam, any time they find something that’s new and different they need to let a healthcare professional know,” said Alissa Abentroth, M.D.
Abentroth is the director of the Women’s Health Institute and Breast Care at St. Peter’s Health and says that getting catching cancer early plays a huge role in treatment.
“In all cancers, but specifically in breast cancer, that early detection is going to be key.,” said Abentroth, “That is why we’re pushing for awareness and pushing for screening. That way we catch cancers at a much earlier stage and they’re going to be much more curable.”
Mammography screenings are capable of detecting early signs of cancer that may be too small or subtle to feel by hand.
According to Abentroth, mammograms are considered one of the best tools in the early detection of breast cancer.
St. Peter’s sees about 90 breast cancer diagnosis a year, and CDC data indicates that 1 in every 8 women will develop breast cancer at some point in their life.
For more information about breast cancer treatment and options click here.
From the National Breast Cancer Foundation:
- One in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.
- Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women.
- Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among women.
- Each year it is estimated that over 252,710 women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer and more than 40,500 will die.
- Although breast cancer in men is rare, an estimated 2,470 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer and approximately 460 will die each year.
- On average, every 2 minutes a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer and 1 woman will die of breast cancer every 13 minutes.
- Over 3.3 million breast cancer survivors are alive in the United States today.