As Breast Cancer Awareness Month begins, State Senator Eric Adams (D-Brooklyn) announced today that screening mammograms are available at little or no cost to eligible local residents through the Brooklyn Healthy Living Partnership. In honor of the annual awareness campaign, the Brooklyn lawmaker renewed his commitment to educate constituents about the importance of breast cancer screening, which can save lives.
"In support of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I urge you to take the time to learn more about breast cancer, the second leading cause of cancer death among women," Senator Adams said. "When October rolls around, it’s time to think pink."
Experts estimate that one in eight women will develop breast cancer at some point during their lifetime. Because treatment is more likely to be successful when the disease is detected early, screening mammograms play a crucial role in saving lives.
A mammogram is a special X-ray used to create detailed images of the breast. The National Cancer Institute recommends that women age 40 and older have a screening mammogram every one to two years. Mammograms can help detect a breast cancer tumor years before a lump can be felt by touch. Women at higher than average risk of breast cancer should talk with their physicians about whether to have mammograms before age 40.
Senator Adams noted that anyone can get breast cancer, including men. "Many people assume it can’t happen to them, but it can, even if they get regular exercise, eat well and generally do all the things we're told will keep us healthy. The point is, take care of yourself. Go in and get checked."
An excellent resource for New Yorkers with mammography or breast cancer questions or concerns is the Adelphi NY Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline and Support program, which directs callers to community resources and provides telephone support through volunteers, all of whom are breast cancer survivors. The toll-free hotline, at 1-800-877-8077, has offered information and support for 27 years.
Brooklyn residents can also get information about free screening mammograms by calling the Brooklyn Healthy Living Partnership (American Cancer Society) at (718) 237-7851.
"Greater awareness of breast cancer can save lives," Senator Adams concluded. "There’s never been a better time than today to make a commitment to self breast exams, regular visits to the doctor and, depending on your age, periodic screening mammograms. Do it for your loved ones. Do it for yourself."