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Breast Cancer Awareness - Why You Should Get A Mammogram

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By Andrew Reed

Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) October is breast cancer awareness month and local organizations and hospitals are raising awareness on getting a mammogram.

More than a third of Idaho women over 40 do not receive mammograms.

Making Idaho last out of 50 states and the District of Columbia, in cancer screening mammogram rates.

"1 and 8 women in their lifetime will get breast cancer so it's very important to get that mammogram. The sooner they get it the sooner it will be found and the easier it is to treat and the easier it is to move on with life,” said Melanie Gonzales, St. Luke’s Magic Valley.

The Idaho Department of Health and welfare reports the earlier a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, the better her chances of survival.

"We do mammograms for early protection, they say that if you find a cancer on a mammogram that it will be found 3 to 5 years earlier than when you can feel it” said Rochelle Anderson, St. Luke’s Magic Valley.

The American Cancer Society recommends yearly mammograms for women beginning at the age 40.

In past years, only 63.8% of Idaho women aged 40 or older reported being screened for breast cancer.

The alarming news is that Idaho’s screening rates have been at or near the bottom over the last decade.

"Women who come in for the first time it's that not knowing and it's being afraid of what the mammogram will find. There is discomfort but it only lasts 3-5 minutes for the entire study."

An exam that last up to five minutes, which can save your life.

If you aren't sure on how to go about getting a mammogram you can dial 2-1-1.


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