I’m back on the Mama Kat bandwagon with this awesome propmt.
In an effort to spread awareness, share your (or someone you know/love) breast cancer story
My mother was diagnosed with early stage breast cancer in 2001. She sat down with a surgeon to go over her treatment options and he laid out a few different scenarios. My mom, a nurse, was already sure what she wanted to do.
“Cut the fucker off,” mom said.
(That answers a lot of questions about how I got this way, huh?)
Breast cancer is not a joke. The American Cancer Society estimates that 207,090 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 and 39,840 will die of the disease. Breast cancer mortality is disproportionately high among minorities and low-income women because they tend not to have access to adequate screenings. Screenings, which can catch breast cancer at earlier, more treatable stages, are life savers – breast cancer caught in local stages has a 98% five-year survival rate but if it is caught later and has the opportunity to spread through the body, the five-year survival rate drops to 23%.
My mother is cancer free now. Has been since the day of her mastectomy in 2001. But it’s the mammogram that spotted the cancer cells in their most localized stage that really saved her life.
The CDC administers a program called the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection and treatment program that assists low-income and uninsured women in getting mammograms and Pap smears at no cost. It’s a drop in the bucket in terms of reaching all the women who need to be reached – right now that program is only able to serve 1 in 5 eligible women. But it’s a start. If you know a woman over 40 who needs a mammogram but hasn’t gotten one because of lack of insurance or lack of ability to pay, please tell them about this program. They can visit the website or call their state department of health to help them find a screening facility. If a woman is diagnosed with cancer through this program, there is also assistance in paying for treatment.
Breast Cancer Resources: