In the U.S., one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, and three out of four of those diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history or known risk factors. In fact, 25 percent of women who die from breast cancer are diagnosed in their forties.
“Just last month, a 79-year-old woman missed her mammogram at Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) because she was caring for her daughter who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer” said John Horn, MD, chief of staff and medical director of Radiology at NGMC Barrow. “Thankfully, the mother remembered to reschedule her appointment, and we found an area of concern. Additional imaging and biopsy revealed she had breast cancer, too – so now mom and daughter are fighting together.”
NGMC Barrow has a team of well-trained mammography technologists and expert radiologists to detect breast cancer early, as well as medical oncologists and surgeons to manage treatment. A cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming, so NGMC Barrow also provides a nurse navigator to guide and support patients from diagnosis through recovery.
“The best protection is early detection and treatment,” said Sandi Clark, oncology nurse navigator at NGMC Barrow. “We have the power to reduce breast cancer by getting yearly mammograms and committing to risk-reducing healthy lifestyle habits.”
To lower your risk of developing breast cancer, the CDC recommends keeping a healthy weight, exercising regularly, avoiding or limiting alcoholic drinks to no more than one per day, breast feeding and consulting your physician about risks with hormone replacement and oral contraceptives. For women with a family history of breast cancer, it is recommended they talk with a physician to learn how to lower the risk of developing the disease.
Representatives from NGMC Barrow joined the Winder City Council and Mayor David Maynard this week as the city issued a proclamation officially declaring October as “Breast Cancer Awareness Month.”
Chad Hatfield, president of NGMC Barrow; Jayme Carrico, executive director of Oncology; Charles Nash, III, MD, medical director of NGMC’s Cancer Services and medical oncologist with Longstreet Clinic; and Sunita Singh, Public Relations manager for NGMC Barrow; all attended the Winder City Council meeting to reinforce Northeast Georgia Health System’s mission to “improve the health of our community in all we do.”
ABOUT NORTHEAST GEORGIA MEDICAL CENTER
Since 1951, Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) has been on a mission of improving the health of our community in all we do. With hospitals located in Gainesville, Braselton and Barrow – the three NGMC campuses have a total of 713 beds and more than 800 medical staff members representing more than 50 specialties. NGMC is part of Northeast Georgia Health System, a non-profit that cares for more than 1 million people across more than 18 counties. Learn more at www.nghs.com.