Roswell: "Most women with breast cancer, don't have a family history of it"

Posted at 5:27 PM, Oct 24, 2017

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and our Liz Lewin sat down with Chief of Breast Imaging Dr. Ermelinda Bonaccio to talk about the importance early detection. 

According to Dr. Bonaccio, 1 in 8 American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their life. 

We all know someone who has battled or is currently battling the disease. In fact, breast cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in 2017. About 252,710 cases are expected to be diagnosed in 2017 and unfortunately 40,610 women in the U.S. are expected to die from the disease in 2017. 

But according to research by the American Cancer Society, U.S. breast cancer death rates have dropped nearly 40% from 1989 to 2015. 

The big decline has been attributed to improvements in treatment and increased early detection by mammography. 

Routine mammography reduces a woman's risk of dying from breast cancer by 30% to 40% -- it saves lives. 

Here are a few screening recommendations:

  • Women at average risk should get annual mammograms beginning at age 40
  • Women at higher risk for breast cancer because of family history or other risk factors need to begin screening sooner
  • Women should continue routine mammography as long as their health is good and have a life expectancy of greater than 10 years

Roswell Park offers screening mammography at its new Scott Bieler Clinical Sciences Center, with appointments available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Roswell Institute produces Cancer Talk podcasts where listeners can learn more about various cancers from doctors who've studied and currently practice in the field.

Dr. Bonaccio has two podcasts: "Can I Get a Mammogram If..." and "What to Expect When Getting a Mammogram."

In case you missed it, check out our Facebook Live: