Mammograms at UC San Diego Health: Dr. Anne Wallace

Mammograms at UC San Diego Health: Dr. Anne Wallace


Hi I’m Ann Wallace and I’m the director
of the UC San Diego Moors comprehensive Breast Health Center and we see about
600 new breast cancer patients a year and work up thousands of women who are
either high-risk or regular risk and one of the ways we diagnose breast cancer is
through mammography so I first saw Kim when she presented with a mammogram that
was very abnormal in a data biopsy that showed cancer and I’m looking at her
mammogram she had a large area of something that would only be sent on a
mammogram and you wouldn’t be able to feel it or know about it in any other
way I’m a retired San Diego City firefighter
I’ve always been healthy tried to be active and try to better my health in
any way I could earlier this year I lost my sister to breast cancer and I decided
that I needed to get in and have a mammogram done they saw some things that
they wanted to biopsy but I just thought it was just another another time where
they’re just gonna say everything’s okay but that wasn’t the case this time they
found breast cancer the American Cancer Society has has come out with their new
guidelines for screening mammogram for normal risk women normal risk meaning no
family history etc the new guidelines are starting at age 45 is Green a
mammogram every year and then at age 54 changing that to every other year since
I’ve been having mammograms I’ve been told that I have dense breasts and it’s
made it hard to feel variations or feel during self-exams
fill if there’s new lumps or even if there is a lump so I could never tell
you know what I was feeling if it was a lump or if it was just part of my breast
so clinical exam is another aspect of the American Cancer Society guidelines
that they touched on and they basically showed that there weren’t statistical
benefit to having your doctor see and feel your breasts when when you go in
for your exam we would like to soften that a little bit and feel that our
primary care base is extremely good at picking up breast cancers and knowing
the difference but something serious and not and so we
recommend that when you have your primary primary exam with your doctor
that they do still do a breast exam on you a woman should know her body the
same way she knows her skin that she knows all the other habits of her body
so that she knows if something different is in her breast that she can then show
it to her doctor what I would like to tell other women is
that nobody likes to have mammograms no they’re not fun but you just have to
show up and they do it for you but it’s going to make the difference of our
early detection and if you have early detection it makes a big difference in
the rest of your life I cannot stress enough the importance of screening
mammograms there is no data that doesn’t show clear survival benefit when women
get screened a lot of the controversy that we’ve heard with changing screening
guidelines has been designed to basically figure out who needs to get
screened and when they should get screened for overall risk benefit ratio
but mammograms do save lives and Kim is a great example of that her cancer was
only found on mammogram she didn’t feel it she couldn’t see anything and it
detected a very significant breast cancer that saved her life

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