Things will soon look a little rosier than usual at Ivinson Memorial Hospital. Beginning October 1, staff members will trade in their regular latex gloves for pink ones — a show of solidarity in the fight against breast cancer, the second-leading cause of cancer death among American women.
During October, the pink gloves will be a simple reminder that early detection really is the best protection. We now understand that if caught early, breast cancer is entirely treatable, which is why breast cancer screenings are so important.
The mammogram, an x-ray of the breast, can detect breast cancer up to two years before a tumor can be felt. Mammograms are the key to a solid, early clinical diagnosis. In recent years, mammograms have gone from analog, black-and-white films to digital, allowing doctors to enlarge images and rotate them to look at abnormalities more closely.
Ivinson has installed the Selenia Dimensions 6000. This system is fast, low dose and clinically superior. The 2D and 3D image slices are reviewed together to make clinical decisions or diagnoses part of the screening exam. There is even a paddle system that conforms to the natural contours of the breast, providing greater comfort to the patient and a more even compression across the entire breast. We are thrilled with this new technology and the advantages it is giving our patients.
In looking at the statistics, a vast majority of women don’t rate their mammogram experience as bad. They feel it is inconvenient but not uncomfortable or embarrassing. In the United States, breast cancer is second only to lung cancer as the leading cause of cancer deaths among women.
The consequences of missing out on screenings may mean a later diagnosis, which could also lower chances of survival. Digital mammography is a simple yet effective tool in the early detection of breast cancer.
Choose to act during Breast Cancer Awareness Month or, even better, choose to act in your birthday month. This is the most important gift you can give yourself. It truly is a reason to celebrate.
For more information on Ivinson Memorial Hospital digital mammography system or to schedule a mammogram, please call the IMH Radiology Department at (307) 755‑4640.