A Word About Mammograms

Since mammograms become a recommended method of screening for breast cancer in the late 1980s, the death rate from breast cancer has dropped by 30 percent. As imaging technology has advanced in the last forty years, mammograms have become better and increasingly accurate, making them still one of the most effective methods of early detection. Though mammograms are proven to be very beneficial, the rate of mammograms is declining. Here are seven reasons why some women are putting it off, and one reason why you shouldn’t.

Seven Reasons Why Women Are Putting Off Mammograms

I Don’t Have Family History. Yes, it is true that family history increases your risk of developing breast cancer, researchers estimate that only 5 to 10 percent of those diagnosed have a family history of breast cancer.

I Haven’t Noticed Any Changes. When you think breast cancer, you probably think of a lump in the breast. So, if you don’t have a lump, you’re in the clear, right? No, not true at all, according to the National Cancer Institute. Mammograms and other imaging tools are key instruments for detecting lumps that are too small to feel.

I’m Not Old Enough. Breast cancer can and does affect women of every age. The American Cancer Society recommends women over the age of 40 get a mammogram every year. For women under the age of 40 with a family history or other risk factors, talk to your doctor about the appropriate time for you to begin screening.

I Am Afraid It 

Will Hurt. While a mammogram is not always comfortable, new digital mammography technology has made the test a lot more comfortable than the imaging of years past.

I Am Afraid of Radiation. Modern mammography means the minimal amount of radiation necessary to capture images. This means that mammograms are now safer than ever.

I’m Too Busy. We get it – you’ve got the demands of a family, careers, and life. Taking care of everything and everybody is important, but you’ve got to set some time aside to take care of yourself, too.

I’m Am Scared It Will Find Cancer. Talking about breast cancer can be scary; getting tested for breast cancer can be scarier. We understand this, but encourage all women to get routinely checked for breast cancer.

One Reason Why You Shouldn’t.

It could save your life. Annual preventive screenings such as mammograms and other imaging save lives because early detection means early intervention. Take the time to schedule your mammogram today. Dr. Peterson encourages all women to get regular mammograms. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.