Whew! We’ve reached the end of 2013, our inaugural year as bloggers, writing about radiology, women’s health and imaging and even some general fun stuff for the heck of it. We love writing for you, and we’re so grateful for your readership. What we are most grateful for is the opportunity to play a role in education about women’s imaging, women’s health issues and steps we can all take to work towards our healthiest selves.
In terms of breast health (as well as health in general!), there are things we have no control over, including genetics, age and gender. But there is much we can do for ourselves. And we find this invigorating. If there’s one New Year’s Wish we have for you is that you feel empowered to act upon the future of your health.
There were some big stories in breast health and imaging this year, prompting discussions by media outlets and healthcare specialists alike. Some of the more talked about issues which we addressed in our blog include:
Breast cancer genetics - the decision to undergo preventative mastectomy for women with genetic mutations involving the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 genes prompted a lot of discussion, highlighting the power of genetic testing and some of the angst it can cause.
Breast density notification laws - breast density has been a big subject in the past year, with several more states enacting notification laws; knowing your breast density, which can only be determined by a mammogram, is one part of understanding your total breast cancer risk.
Debunking myths about breast cancer and breast imaging is an important subject for us. Too many women don’t know that family history plays a small role in breast cancer risk - only 10-15 % of women diagnosed with breast cancer have a family history. If you’re over 40 and have breasts you are at risk!
Screening tests, including mammography, were under continued scrutiny this year. We recommend yearly screening mammograms for women over 40, yearly clinical breast exams for women over 40 and every 1-3 years after age 20, and self-breast exams monthly.
We will continue do our best to help educate and illuminate - breast health and breast imaging can be a confusing, stressful subject - our hope is that our information will make it less so.
Cheers to you with many thanks for a great year and many more to come!
Dr. Harrison and Dr. McGhie
Image credit: Happy New Year !!! by Tim Hamilton (via Flickr) Copyright Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Originally published 12/31/13 on mammographykc.com.