Local woman makes mammogram appointment right after celebrating her 40th birthday

WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) — We spoke with doctors about how an early screening can be a life-saving event, and a local woman who made an appointment for her mammogram right after celebrating her 40th birthday.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and for Roswell Park’s second Mammothon Week, the staff at Breast Care WNY in Williamsville wants you and your loved ones to remember the importance scheduling your screening.

Last October at the height of the pandemic, Roswell Park launched Mammothon Week, a live drive urging a goal of 200 women to schedule mammogram screenings.

This year, they decided to raise the bar calling for 300 women, to get tested early and stay safe.

Dr. Marie Quinn, the director of breast imaging at Roswell, says she recommends yearly screenings beginning at age 40 in women of average risk, but it never hurts to be prepared if you have special circumstances.

“Some women will start younger so if you know that your mother was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 45, we would recommend starting ten years sooner so, at age 35,” Quinn said.

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed form of cancer in women and the second leading cause of cancer death with about one in eight women who will be diagnosed in their lifetime.

“Breast cancer really touches everyone which is why we want to pick it up early when it’s easily treatable and the women get the maximum benefit from the treatment,” Quinn added.

Breast Care WNY provides multiple services for every stage of the process, for the first timer getting an initial exam, or the patient needing support

“Screening mammograms are the only tests that have been scientifically proven to reduce a woman’s risk of dying from breast cancer,” Quinn added.

And because Breast Care WNY offers such incredible care from start to finish, Jennifer Flick who recently celebrated her 40th birthday signed up immediately becoming one of the 300 women Roswell aimed to reach, while hoping to encourage others to do the same.

“Honestly everybody here has been so lovely, it has, and I of course walked in with a lot of anxiety, it being my first time. But everybody was so lovely made sure I was feeling comfortable made sure I wasn’t too cold, if I needed a drink,” Flick said.

Especially for women of color, Dr. Quinn says, knowledge is power. And it’s always better to be prepared safe, rather than sorry.

“In women of color we do see breast cancers that are diagnosed at a younger age. Women of color also tend to develop more aggressive forms of breast cancer and have increased risk of dying from breast cancer. I always tell patients, it’s so important to know your family history and to know your risk,” Quinn said.

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