Fellow Travelers

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

What do YOU think?

About these new guidelines for mammograms?


I'm in the high risk group so I believe that these 'new' guidelines don't apply to me. That being said, my mother was proactive and found her our breast cancer from a self exam. She located a very small growth (Stage 1) and is now cancer free. She is only 49 and falls into the age group they are focusing in on.

My mother is having her reconstructive surgery from her double mastectomy* next Monday in St. Louis at the Siteman Center. I'm going to make it a point to ask for their opinions on these new guidelines and I'll let you all know.

*That may seem like a bold step due to Stage 1 however, breast cancer runs in our family and the type of cancer she has an extremely strong chance of reoccurring in the other breast. After the operation and the pathology on the tissue, they did find that cells in the other breast where starting to form, so it was the best option for her.

So what our your thoughts on the new guidelines??

16 comments:

Patience said...

I disagree with the new guidelines. I think early detection is key and I will demand being checked when I turn 40. Cancer runs in my family and although brest cancer does not, I would rather not take any chances.

That's Sassy said...

I am also in a high-risk group seeing my mom, mom's sister and grandma all developed breast cancer, after the age of 50 so they wouldn't have known that anything was wrong according to these new guidelines saying its not necessary till after the age of 50 they would have had to wait for the effects to occur or it to spread. I disagree with the new guidelines and maybe enough people with experience will make a difference in this debate.

Classy Fab Sarah said...

I think that early detection is the reason that breast cancer is largely curable in this country.... and I am just upset about the new guidelines.

My dad's sister had breast cancer detected on her 30th birthday... and my mom died of colon cancer before she was 50.... so even though I'm not really "high risk" for breast cancer - I do not want to take any chances.

Manda said...

I think early detection is key and I'm very upset about the new guidelines. This is just messed up IMO. :(

Sara said...

I haven't seen or heard of the new guidelines. Did you have a link that I missed?

J.L.S. said...

I am so against them, and I think everyone I've heard from disagree with them as well. I just don't understand what they are thinking when they say breast self-exams aren't really effective! How else are you supposed to detect changes early? And all you ever hear is that early detection of any cancer is the best strategy to beating cancer.

Sara said...

I take issue with the recommendation to stop teaching self exams. Where is the harm in taking care of yourself and examining your own breasts? The whole thing seems SO lobbyed for by insurance companies wanting to spend less money and self exams are free. Free!

That, and obviously if you are high risk you should be screened earlier, as with any cancer, but the majority of women I know with Breast Cancer did NOT have a family history if it. Oh, and those under 40 who had it, found it themselves.

JD said...

If you look at the survivor rates in cancer, the reason certain cancers have such a low survivor rate is because early detection isn't really possible (i.e. lung cancer). So it seems ridiculous to up the age for mammograms since so many women are survivors due to early detection. Seems to me a way to just lower the survivor rates.

It's best to know your family history and know your risk level and be proactive about it. And I agree with Sara - just because you don't have a family history of it doesn't make you immune. What about women who were adopted and don't know their family history?

I'm appalled by of this, really.

Young Mom/Wife said...

I was really upset with the new guide lines. I understand that they don't like doing mammograms on women under 40 because we tend to have denser breasts which makes the machine pick up on things that aren't really there. I get that, but my Mom who is in her mid 40's always has to ask for them to do an ultrasound on her when she goes in for a breast exam. It works so much better for her and other women.

I am also angered because there are a lot of women in our age range (20's-30's) who get breast cancer and suffer because it is caught too late! Why do those statistics not play into this decision? Unfortunately, scientists are not going to listen to patients they are going to strictly stick to the facts from various research.

AEOT said...

I'm in the high risk group, so I know I'll get checked. While I do understand the science behind the comprehensive study, so many women are going to be in such an uproar about this (rightly so!) that it will be changed again. The ACS is also not standing behind this ruling, so that will definitely be something to watch out for.

Via said...

I disagree with them immensely. If they didn't start until age 50, my mom wouldn't be here today. My doctor has recommended that I start getting them around 27/28 because I'm in the high risk group as well. An alarming amount of women diagnosed with breast cancer are under the age of 50--this seems scammish to me, and really bothers me that these regulations are even being acknowledged. I don't know how they figured that this would be a good idea.

Kate said...

I am PISSED about the new guidelines. Many women aren't getting mammograms at all - push back the guidelines 10 years and I bet we'll see even more women slip through the cracks. I had a lumpectomy at 20 after insisting on a mammogram - I don't want to think what might have happened had I not been proactive.

martha - ca knitter said...

I'll bet a man came up with the new guidelines.

Hannah Noel said...

I haven't seen/heard of the guidelines.. guess I need to go look them up!

Bella said...

I completely disagree with the new guidelines, for all reasons stated above by the other girls!

It Is Everlasting said...

I completely disagree with the new guidelines. I think that we should all continue to squeeze our boobs and absolutely get mammograms at 40.

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