Screening for breast cancer is a way for women to be proactive about their health. The Breast Center recommends that women begin annual mammography starting at age 40. Maybe you’ve done a good job getting your mammogram every year — until the COVID-19 outbreak.
Many women postponed getting a mammogram due to concerns of exposure to COVID-19. However, you should not delay medical care during the coronavirus outbreak. This includes breast cancer screening.
Coronavirus will be around longer than many people anticipated. Delaying cancer screening until the virus is gone isn’t a realistic option. Skipping your mammogram during COVID-19 could have serious health consequences.
You can still get the medical care that you need while minimizing your risk for exposure to coronavirus. MANA clinics, including The Breast Center, are taking extra precautions to protect the health and safety of staff and patients.
Delaying your mammogram during COVID-19 may do more harm than good.
COVID-19 isn’t the only threat to public health. Delaying cancer screening delays cancer detection. This can make it more difficult to treat cancers. It could even increase the number of cancer-related deaths.
Another year of growth for a cancer that is detectable now can make a significant difference. Cancer is most treatable when it is found in its early stages. The longer that a cancer goes undetected, the more difficult it is to treat.
Mammograms save lives. According to the Society of Breast Imaging, annual mammography results in the greatest decrease in mortality for women with breast cancer, and it leads to the most life years gained.
The five-year survival rate for breast cancer that is found early — before it spreads beyond the breast — is 99 percent.
It’s better late than never.
If you missed your mammogram this year, don’t wait until next year for a screening. It’s better to reschedule your mammogram a few weeks or months after you missed it than to delay screening for another year.
The Breast Center temporarily postponed screening mammography earlier in 2020 due to COVID-19, but resumed screening mammograms at the beginning of May. We are now encouraging patients to catch up on missed screenings.
The Breast Center is taking measures to ensure a safe environment for our patients:
- Screening patients for COVID-19 at the door.
- Requiring patients to wear face masks at all times in the clinic. Staff will wear face masks as well.
- Limiting the number of patients in the clinic to allow for adequate physical distancing.
- Thoroughly disinfecting each exam room between patients.
If you live in Northwest Arkansas and you’ve missed your mammogram with The Breast Center due to COVID-19, call 479-442-6266 to reschedule.