Survivor stresses importance of mammograms during Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Better Health & Wellness

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – October marks Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Did you know, one in eight women develop breast cancer in their life? One of the ways to beat cancer is early detection.

In November 2007, Wichitan, LaWanda Holt-Fields found a spot on her breast.

“I knew right away what it was,” she said.

Back then, Holt-Fields decided to wait to go to the doctor.

“I thought ‘it’s the holidays,’ Where I work, we have a summer program, and I just don’t have time to be sick,” she said.

In August 2008, she finally went to get a mammogram and confirmed what she knew – it was breast cancer.

“It was very scary and getting the news was like a blow,” Holt-Fields said. “Because from my family history if you have cancer, you die. I had two small kids, and that wasn’t something I was prepared to think about.”

LaWanda went into survival mode.

After five years of treatment, she became cancer-free.

“I had the support of my family. My husband was very instrumental in taking care of me during that time, and I’m just grateful that it all turned out well,” the survivor said.

She is thankful to be 13 years cancer-free. However, she wants to make sure no one else makes the mistake of waiting to get screened.

“Women say all the time it’s, you know uncomfortable, but I think the level of uncomfort compared to what you could encounter is minimal, and there’s really no excuse not to do it. That 15- 20 minutes could save your life,” she said.

Holt-Fields wants to remind people that breast cancer does not just impact women, men are at risk as well.

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