October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

One out of eight American women will develop breast cancer over the course of their lifetime. Many breast cancer risk factors are related to the amount of estrogen a woman is exposed to, which can be affected by early menarche; late menopause; pregnancy later in life; never having been pregnant; obesity (which can increase estrogen production); or long-term use of hormone replacement therapies.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, or USPSTF, and the American Cancer Society, or ACS, have different recommendations on when to begin breast cancer screenings and how frequent women should get a mammogram. Women with any personal risk factors; family history; or known genetic mutations may want to get screened earlier − but your primary care provider can give you an individualized recommendation based on your health.

  • USPSTF recommends a mammogram every two years for women between the ages of 50 and 74; women with a family history of breast cancer, or other risk factors, may choose to start between the ages of 40 and 49. USPSTF does not recommend breast self-exams.
  • ACS recommends yearly mammograms starting at age 40; as well as clinical breast exams every three years for women in their 20s and 30s and every year for women 40 and older. ACS recommends women in their 20s start breast self-exams.

Having a screening mammogram won’t prevent breast cancer, but early detection can improve your chances of surviving it.

In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Northern Arizona Healthcare is offering digital mammograms for the reduced cost of $85 (screening mammogram only, additional physician charges may apply) throughout the month of October at two locations in Cottonwood and Sedona.

Call to make an appointment today:

Verde Valley Medical Imaging Center
450 S. Willard St., #111
Office hours: Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Verde Valley Medical Center − Sedona Campus
3700 W. State Route 89A
Office hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.