WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A breast cancer survivor shared her story of survival, so others know the importance of a yearly mammogram.
Mary Rider said it was right after her mammogram that she was diagnosed with Invasive Ductile Breast Cancer.
The words ‘You have cancer’ are bound to change your life, and Mary Rider said that diagnosis made hers even better.
“I am more positive. I think I am more outgoing, and I love life,” said breast cancer survivor Mary Rider.
Rider says the fight was not easy.
“It was tough at times. After surgery, I had the chemotherapy, and you know I was sick,” Rider said.
She also underwent 25 radiation treatments.
“I never wanted to go for a mammogram, and I am not sure why, because my mother is a cancer survivor,” said Rider.
Once she finally got the screening she says it wasn’t so bad.
“It is kind of a win/win situation, you win if they don’t find it, and you win if they find it early,” said Rider.
Hand treatments, a spread of food, fresh flowers, a cocktail, hand treatments and even chair massages, all of that is part of the Ascension Via Christi Mammo Party concept.
“By the time I get in for the mammogram I know I am always more relaxed,” Mammo party attendee Reea Linck said. “This just makes it so much better to be able to take care of it and you don’t have to fear it quite as much.”
Reea Linck said she has attended Mammo parties for years, and said she prefers the Mammo party concept, compared to the traditional mammogram.
When it comes to the screenings, the FDA recently proposed new guidelines, and one of those deals with sharing information with women about the density of their breasts.
Forty percent of women have dense breast tissue, so the proposal would require they receive additional information about how breast density can impact their health, or their risk for cancer.
Although patients will receive that information along with their mammogram results, a long-time Ascension Via Christi mammographer said you then need to take those results to your doctor.
“I think that kind of information also needs to be talked over with their Primary Care Physician, so they can fully understand what the implication of that is or if there are any implications at all to whatever finding it may be on that report,” said mammographer, Carol Hewitt.
The proposal would also require centers that provide mammograms to update their educational materials.
Another suggested change would provide more oversight of the facilities that offer mammography, to ensure all facilities are safe and that each is using the latest and greatest in technology.
“I’ve done mammograms for a long, long time and we have had that kind of regulation for several years and I think that is a good thing,” said Hewitt.
She went on to say, although it’s always a tough feeling to find cancer, it’s crucial to do so early.
Rider is thankful to have recently had her yearly mammogram and she remains cancer free. Two years after her fight, she said whatever you do, do not take anything for granted.
You can join Rider and other survivors, at the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Mission Walk.
It all gets underway on Sunday, September 15th. The fun and fundraising is happening at Distillery 244, at 244 N. Mosley. Day-of Check-In & Survivor/Caregiver Luncheon is at noon. The Walk will take place from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., before a big celebration at WAVE ICT.
The KSN team will be there cheering the survivors on and we hope you can join them!
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