October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month. It’s an important time to spread awareness about the disease, and stress the importance of early detection. Mammography is a proven method for early detection which can greatly improve the chances of survival. For a little over a decade, it was suspected that breast implants and breast cancer were directly related. Technology and research proved that breast implants are not a direct cause for breast cancer, however, it is just as important that women with breast implants schedule an annual mammography as it is for women with natural breasts. To follow are some important facts about mammograms that every woman should know.
- Since 1990, mammography has helped reduce breast cancer-related fatalities by 1/3 in the United States.
- Alarmingly, 3/4 of the women diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history of the disease and are not considered high risk individuals.
- The likelihood that a woman will develop breast cancer is 1 in 69 after age 40.
- Women with breast implants should get mammograms at the same rate as women with natural breasts when age appropriate.
- Women with breast implants need to inform the mammography technologist that they have breast implants because a special technique is required in order to make sure that the most amount of breast tissue is visible in the exam as possible. The “implant displacement” technique will not damage your breast implants in any way, and greatly benefits the outcome of your mammography.
- For every 1,000 women who have a mammogram, 100 of them are sent for further imaging tests, 20 women undergo biopsy to test irregular tissue, and 5 are diagnosed with breast cancer.