According to the CDC, breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the United States. According to Breastcancer.org, 1 in 8 women in the United States will develop breast cancer over the course of their life. It also claims that approximately 281,550 new cases of breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in the United States in 2021. The best way to prevent breast cancer is regular breast screening and following up with your provider regularly. Breast screening is important because when breast cancer is detected early, the cancer is still small and localized; and therefore very treatable.
An X ray of the breast which is also called a mammogram is used to screen for breast cancer in women who have no signs or symptoms of breast cancer. When women have signs and symptoms of breast cancer such as lumps, pain, or changes in size, other tests such as Ultrasound or MRI are used.
The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), an organization of disease experts who find the best way to prevent diseases and recommend preventive measures, advises that women who are 50 to 74 years old need to get a mammogram every two years and women who are 40 to 49 years old should talk to their providers about the risks of developing breast cancer and how frequently to get screened. In contrast, the American Cancer Society and American College of Radiology recommend breast cancer screening for women aged 40 to 44. Most insurance covers mammograms for women who are over 40.
At CCACC, we help patients identify risk factors for breast cancer and provide free breast cancer screening for uninsured patients aged 45 to 65, if they meet income eligibility. As part of the Maryland Breast and Cervical Cancer Program, uninsured female Maryland residents can receive free service for mammogram and cervical cancer screening. Call us today to make an appointment.