Mammography Monday’s –Throughout the Year!
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Mammography Monday’s –Throughout the Year!

We have reached our destination.  Let’s Review! 

 

I hope these tips have helped you take the necessary steps to do your part in the fight against breast cancer.

Mammography is still the most effective tool in our arsenal in the fight against breast cancer. While screening mammograms will not cure breast cancer, it will position us to stay ahead of the curve in which for most of us is half the battle.

We were reminded how to prepare for our Screening Mammogram:

Do not wear deodorant, period. Removing deodorant prior to your mammogram is not recommended. Often, residue from deodorants remains unnoticed in the crevices of your armpit and can cause artifacts on your image. Deodorant artifacts are often misinterpreted as calcification's (Although breast calcifications are usually noncancerous (benign), certain patterns of calcification's — such as tight clusters with irregular shapes — may indicate breast cancer).

Do not apply creams, lotions and or talcum powder on your breast prior to your mammogram. These items such as creams or lotions also hinder the quality of your mammogram. They can prevent proper contact during the compression of your breast, and powders contain properties that cause artifacts.

Minimize your caffeine intake, which for some women create breast pain and sensitivity during the positioning and compression of their breast during their mammogram.

We were reminded to quiet the voices of negativity:    

Quiet the voices in your head that are telling you to be afraid of a breast cancer diagnosis.

1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. 7 women will not.

Quiet the negative comments from other women who might have experienced an uncomfortable mammogram.

Every woman is unique and will have a different experience. The exam will last approximately 6 minutes, you can do this!

We were reminded of the inherent tools we have in our arsenal to fight against breast cancer.

Using your “I”s Intellect & Intuition

Know that “No News” does not mean “Good News’, it just means “No News” period. Make certain you are informed of your mammogram results in person or by a patient notification letter. It is the law!

If additional follow up is recommended, please schedule your appointment. You have taken the first step to better breast health-don’t stop now.

Intuition:

Ladies your mammogram is done, at least for another year but you are not. Know it’s time to use your “Intuition”. All women are gifted with that inner voice that speaks; if we listen we can hear it pointing us to something that just isn’t right.

Breast Inspection is one of the tools that will assist you with staying ahead of the curve of breast cancer by noticing changes in your breast.

Touch:

Can you feel a lump? Either in the breast, upper chest or armpits.

Is there a lumpy area? Or unusual thickening of the breast tissue that doesn’t go away?

Is there any unusual pain? Either in part of the breast or the armpit.

Look:

Any change in size or shape? For example, one breast might become larger or lower than the other.

Any change in skin texture? Such as puckering or dimpling of the skin of the breast.

Any change in color? For example, the breast may look red or inflamed.

What about the appearance or direction of the nipple? For example, one might become inverted (turned in) when it normally points out.

Any unusual discharge? One or both nipples might have a discharge.

Any rash or crusting of the nipple or surrounding area?

Check:

Is anything unusual? If so, get it checked out by your doctor as soon as possible.

Listen to your “Intuition”-if you have a sense after your Breast Inspection, something is not right to get it checked. It’s perfectly fine to be wrong-promise. It’s better to be certain.

We were reminded of why we should have a Screening Mammogram

Screening Mammography plays a central part in early detection of breast cancers because it can show changes in the breast up to two years before a patient or physician can feel them. Current guidelines from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the American Cancer Society (ACS), the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) recommend screening mammography every year for women, beginning at age 40. Research has shown that annual mammograms lead to early detection of breast cancers when they are most curable and breast-conservation therapies are available.

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) adds that women who at increased risk due to a genetic history of breast cancer should seek expert medical advice about whether they should begin screening before age 40 and about the frequency of screening.

We were reminded of the Myths associated with having a Screening Mammogram.

Remember, every woman has a different experience.

It is a myth that mammograms are always painful.

Most women state that it was not as painful as they anticipated.

Remember, you are in control. Communicate with your technologist, and we will take the time to stop, and reposition. This will often ease the discomfort you might feel.

We were reminded that our unique body size and shape is not a challenge for the Mammography Technologist.

You need not be concerned or embarrassed by your body and what the technologist will think.

Mammography technologists are professionals and we have chosen our profession because we are interested in caring for women and their health.

The technologist will work with each patient to get the best possible images for the radiologist to review while caring for each woman in a kind and compassionate way.

We were reminded that the time spent on our health is priceless.

While it is not possible to predict unforeseen delays, generally, your bilateral screening mammogram appointment will take approximately 20 minutes.

If you choose a facility that provides the results while you wait, you should prepare to wait at least an hour.

 

#Let's Keep Fighting Until We All Win

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