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Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Skip Your Mammogram During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Skip Your Mammogram During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Uh-oh. You see that it’s almost time for your annual mammogram, but you’re worried about heading outside of your home to get it done due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Should you put it off until next year?

The answer to that question is no, you should not put off your mammogram. Below are 6 reasons you shouldn’t skip your mammogram due to the coronavirus pandemic.

1. Mammograms lower the risk of breast cancer deaths

Mammograms reduce your risk of dying from breast cancer by about 30 percent. Breast cancers detected through mammograms often can’t be felt during a breast self-exam since cancers can grow for up to two years before you feel a lump in a normal breast exam. Early stage cancers have more treatment options, including less invasive surgeries. These cancers also have better five-year survival rates. Stage 0 and 1 breast cancers have a survival rate of almost 100 percent according to the American Cancer Society. Even stage 2 breast cancers have a survival rate of 93 percent. These are the types of cancers that mammograms can catch that you may not notice, so getting your mammogram is vital to getting life saving treatment faster.

2. Your family history isn’t a good predictor of breast cancer risk

Another key reason not to skip your mammogram is because regardless of your family history, you can still get breast cancer. Many women who have no family history of breast cancer might feel like they can skip their mammograms. However, 80 percent of women who are diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history at all, according to the American Cancer Society. That’s a staggering percentage of women, so don’t put off getting a mammogram, even if no one in your family has had breast cancer.

3. Mammograms are safe

Some women worry that the radiation in mammograms may increase their risk for cancer. However, radiation from mammograms use less radiation than chest X-rays and expose you to only about a tenth of the amount of radiation you are exposed to in nature. No studies report that mammograms increase breast cancer risk. Research places your risk of getting cancer caused by repeated mammograms at less than .001 percent. And when you get a mammogram from a 3D mammography machine like the one at Medical Center Barbour, you actually get an even lower dose of radiation than the standard 2D mammogram.

4. Mammograms cost little to nothing

Under the Affordable Care Act, your mammograms must be covered without a co-pay or deductible. On all private insurance plans, as well as Medicare, mammograms are actually free. If you do not have insurance, many community resources can help you pay for mammograms as well.

5. Nearly all experts agree on the guidelines for mammograms

Most medical associations support yearly mammograms starting at age 40. These groups include the American Medical Association, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American College of Radiology, the American Cancer Society, the National Cancer Institute, and the National Comprehensive Cancer Network. These organizations recommend mammograms based on many years of research and evidence that mammograms improve breast cancer detection and survival rates, so take the experts’ advice and get your mammogram!

6. Medical Center Barbour is a safe space

There is no place safer to come for any inpatient or outpatient medical procedure than Medical Center Barbour. As Medical Center Barbour is a hospital, there are very strict guidelines set in place by the Centers for Disease Control and the Alabama Department of Public Health that all hospitals, including MCB, must comply with. The hospital environment requires that all surfaces are sanitized to CDC standards, that social distancing measures are put in place and monitored, and that all staff and patients wear masks. Rest assured that when you come to MCB for care, you are in safe hands.

Remember, getting your mammogram at Medical Center Barbour is quick, conveniently located right here at home, and performed by the kindest medical professionals you will ever meet. So don’t let COVID-19 keep you from getting the preventative care that you need! Call Medical Center Barbour at 334-688-7002 to schedule your next mammogram today!

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