Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Guest Blog: Beat Cancer–Mammograms Are Valuable

The debate over mammography’s value still continues even months after the United States Preventive Services Task Force’s new recommendations. I know that this recommendation and therefore value of mammography has outraged many people in the radiology field.

Most of us see it as taking 10 steps backward. In the early years of mammography, screening was just not done, but so much progress has been made in the early detection of breast cancer! We believe that a decrease of 30 percent mortality rate is largely due to screening mammography.

As the medical world works to eliminate breast cancer, we still need to face the reality. If an abnormality is identified, you want it to be as early as possible. With GRMC radiology technologists as your health partners, you can detect breast cancer early and beat the disease before it’s too late. Our breast imaging partners at Iowa Radiology post their opinions regarding the USPSTF’s recommendations on mammography.

GRMC has an excellent breast health team. Dr. Nicholas Kuiper recently joined Surgical Associates, bringing extensive expertise in breast surgeries – both benign and malignant. He joins the excellent radiologists and breast imaging specialists from Iowa Radiology and oncology specialists already caring for patients at GRMC. We have a breast health team who truly are focused on you.

Seated in Front: Terri Nath, Kathy McNulty
Second Row: Mindi Koehler, Kris Watts, Jean Walston,
Monica Kellogg, William Heggen, MD, Nicholas Kuiper, DO
Third Row: Brooke Uhlmann, Gina Pitman

If our radiologists see a questionable spot on a mammogram, we follow up on the concern. We do this in a quest to make sure it is not a cancer. That’s the point: to make sure it is not cancer. The American Cancer Society continues to support annual mammography screening beginning at age 40. This is a simple noninvasive screening test that helps save lives. Of all the models, the greatest mortality reduction was the annual mammograms starting at age 40.

Someday we may eliminate breast cancer but for now early detection is the best way to beat the disease.

Gina Fuller, RT, (R), (M)

1 comment:

Zooper Strollers said...

I would always recommend a mammogram. You can't put a cost on your health!