I think about breast health sometimes more than others (for heavens sake, please wear a supportive workout bra during aerobic activity like Jazzercise! Those flimsy regular bras just don’t hold you in enough to prevent that delicate tissue from tearing and eventually (gasp!) sagging), but lately it’s been front and center in my mind.
I turned 40 this year and dragged my feet into the imaging center to get my first mammogram last month.
What I really wanted was to find a thermogram and avoid the radiation from traditional mammography, but my ob/gyn/midwivery practice didn’t know of any thermogram centers, so I bit my tongue and went in for the radiation of a mammogram even though they are finding the radiation from medical screening procedures can contribute to cancer. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.
What I really wanted was to not do this at all. I waited more than six months, until I was ever-so-gently prodded into going by my fabulous life coach, Rachelle Disbennett-Lee. She was right: it was time to go.
A clinical breast exam performed by highly trained fingers can identify 61% of tumors that turn out to be cancer. Adding a mammogram, increases the ability to find a cancer to 84%. Research done in Montreal in the mid-1990s demonstrated that adding a thermogram to breast exam and conventional mammogram increases the ability to find cancer early — and do something about it — to 95%. (Read more about breast exams.)
I figured I’d do the mammogram this time and keep trying to find a thermogram for next year. I guess I’m glad I did it, because they found something.
Some things, I should say. In my left breast.
They look like specks of dust on the original contact print, and more like jagged rice grains when magnified 90 times. But they’re definitely there, and there shouldn’t be anything there.
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This kind of truly answered my difficulty, thank you!
Breast Cancer is one of the diseases that affects most women but it can be detected early and treated early too*::
we can always prevent cancer by regular self-breast exams~””
Breast Cancer as with other types of cancer, can be prevented by early intervention.’::
[…] all the anxiety I’ve endured since getting my first mammogram in July, seeing the spots, getting a second opinion, and then having them removed with a […]
[…] use radiation to make a couple of images in order to locate the spots on several planes. More radiation from medical tests that I’d rather not be exposed to, all things […]
okay, duh — should have read your next post…
I had a mammogram while in college, and subsequently had a lump removed (benign) — remember? I can’t remember what the lump looked like on the mammogram (and subsequent sonogram) though. With our family history though, you need to follow up ASAP, please. Are they doing a sonogram next? A biopsy? Warm, fuzzy, loving virtual hugs coming your way.
I don’t know you, either, but I wish you strength during this uncertain time.
Wishing you wellness~
…and the edges shouldn’t be jagged. Please waste NO TIME in following up on that.
Thanks, Lisa! I learned long ago to accept all kind thoughts and positive energies as they are offered! 🙂
I’ll keep you posted…
Oh, Elizabeth. I don’t even know you and I feel so bad for you.
Here’s hoping that it isn’t anything, but good for you for going and getting it done, even if you didn’t want to.
I’m going to start looking now for a Thermogram. I turn 40 in a year and a half *gasp* and if I start now, maybe I’ll find it.
As many PV’s to you as you need to get through this difficult time.
Please let us know when you can how you are doing.