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Your Healthy Family: Do you know the latest breast cancer screening recommendations?

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October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
COLORADO SPRINGS -

We recently learned that Emmy Award winning actress Julia Louis Dreyfus has been diagnosed with breast cancer.  She made the announcement on Twitter, days before October began, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Dr. Jason Allen is the Medical Director of the Breast Imaging Program at UCHealth Memorial, who says the diagnosis of such a well known person is a strong reminder that early detection is the very best way women can safeguard themselves against breast cancer.

“Mammography is the only proven screening method for detecting breast cancer.  There are a lot of different recommendations out there unfortunately, which can be some somewhat confusing to women.  The American College of Radiology, and most of the major women's health organizations including the Society of Breast Imagers recommend that women begin annual screening mammography at the age of 40.

Dr. Allen adds that, “Family history or other risk factors such as a history of radiation of the chest for example, if you've had a history of Hodgkin's Lymphoma, or other genetic risk factors can push that age earlier.  Also, if you have a first degree relative that was diagnosed with breast cancer it’s generally recommended that you begin screening about ten years before that first degree relative. a mom, dad, brother, sister was diagnosed with breast cancer.”

If you have any question, make sure to follow up with your doctor and make sure if you fall in these guidelines to schedule a mammogram this month if you haven’t had one in the last year.

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