It has been a long and stressful day of work, and you just want to take a shower and relax with your favorite television programs. While in the shower, you notice a lump in one of your breasts. What was supposed to be a relaxing evening has turned into a nightmare. You call your physician and schedule an appointment as soon as you are out of the shower. Due to the urgency of your issue you are given an appointment for the next morning. When you get in to see your physician, they take a mammogram and a biopsy of the lump to determine if it is cancerous. In your case, you are lucky and you caught the cancer early. The prognosis in your case is very positive, and you can expect a full recovery.
Early detection is the key when fighting any type of cancer, but this is especially true of breast cancer. One in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lifetime. This type of cancer is the most common type of cancer diagnosed in women, with 220,000 women getting diagnosed with the disease every single year. Nearly 40,000 of annual diagnosed cases result in fatalities. This is the second most prevalent cause of death among women, but if the disease is treated early it is highly treatable.
Physicians recommend that any woman between the ages of 35 and 40 get a baseline mammogram, and then continue to get one every single year after their 40th birthday. This is the best possible way to catch the cancer while it is still in the early stages. Almost every single insurance plan, including Medicare, completely cover the costs of these annual check-ups without any copay. Breast cancer is a serious issue, and policy makers want to make it as easy as possible for women to be able to follow their doctors' recommendations for annual tests.
When you arrive for your routine screening, you can expect two views to be taken of each breast. The machine operator may take more images, but do not be alarmed if this is the case. The technologist operating the device is required to get the best possible images of your breasts so any cancerous formations can be detected as early as is possible. Once the images have been taken, your doctor will review them and determine if there is any cause for concern. If your doctor sees something on your images that is not to their liking, they will order a diagnostic mammogram. This screening method is more comprehensive and is used to rule out any of the major concerns that your physician may have with your images. Most of the time these in-depth screenings are just a precautionary measure to ensure your health, and are not indicative of cancer in your body, although it is certainly possible. Getting your annual mammogram is very important. Keep yourself safe and get checked out – it could be the difference between life and death.