Should you consider surgery to lower your risk of breast cancer?
As you’re probably aware, October is breast cancer awareness month. In recent years there has been much talk about preventative surgery to remove the breasts (known as prophylactic mastectomy), but this something every woman should consider?
The most likely answer is no.
However, these are the reasons might consider a prophylactic mastectomy:
- Genetic testing reveals you have a mutation in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene (these genes increase the risk of breast cancer)
- Have a strong family history of breast cancer (breast cancer in several close relatives)
- Had radiation therapy to the chest before age 30
- Have (or have had) cancer in one breast
While a prophylactic mastectomy can lower the risk of getting breast cancer by 90% or more, it doesn’t guarantee that you will not get it. As with any elective surgery, the risks should be thoroughly evaluated before proceeding. If you’re concerned about your breast cancer risk, talk to your physician.
Lastly, there are things that all women can do to help lower their risk of breast cancer, such as being active, maintaining a healthy weight, and avoiding alcohol.
If you have the ability to go early in the morning, I think that’s the only way you’ll avoid a multi-hour wait. Arrived at 6:50AM (doors open at 8AM, by that time there were 60+ people in line) and I was the ~20th person camping out in line. Got in the door at 8:40AM. Waited for a few minutes in the waiting room while they took my information. Test itself was quick (
Courteous. Efficient. Competent.
I came in for a cut and they took care of me quickly. Place was very clean, too.
The last thing I wanted to do was go into a medical facility right now. I very much appreciated how professional yet human they were. Thanks to Tara and the whole team there. Doing a great job.