As part of national breast cancer awareness month, State Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (8th Senate District) is reminding residents that early detection plays a critical role in overcoming breast cancer.
"One of the best ways to successfully treat breast cancer is by detecting it early. Getting screened regularly and practicing good health habits are vital," said Senator Fuschillo, a member of the Senate’s Health Committee.
"Early detection is the best form of prevention. Breast cancer affects families, so it is important for both women and men to practice good breast health. Give your family the gift of hope by getting screened and getting checked," said Geri Barish, President of 1 in 9: The Long Island Breast Cancer Action Coalition.
According to the American Cancer Society, the chances of a woman developing breast cancer at some point in her life are 1 in 8. Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the United States.
The American Cancer Society offers the following recommendations for early breast cancer detection:
- Women should have annual mammograms once they reach the age of 40.
- Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam performed by a health professional at least once every three years. Women ages 40 and over should have this exam performed every year.
- Breast self exams are an option for women once they reach their 20s. Women who decide to do breast self exams should consult with their doctor or nurse to make sure they are doing it correctly. Women should see their doctor right away if they detect anything abnormal.
Women who have a family history of breast or other correlating factors that could increase their risk of developing breast cancer should talk to their doctor about when to start screening.
Both Nassau and Suffolk Counties provide mobile mammography screenings for women at various locations throughout Long Island. These screenings are often either no-out-of pocket cost or low cost to patients. Women who want more information about these services can call the Nassau Health Care Corporation at 516-572-3300 or the Suffolk County Department of Health Services at 631-854-1323.
There are also local organizations who provide support services to individuals with breast cancer and their families. Families who would like more information about these programs can call 1 in 9: The Long Island Breast Cancer Action Coalition at 516-374-3190 or the Adelphi NY Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline and Support Program Hotline at 1-800-877-8077.
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