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Taking Action Towards a Healthier You


Committing to Early Breast Cancer Detection

Good health is essential to almost everything we want to accomplish this season-in our activities, relationships, career, personal improvements and interests-and deserves to take a priority position in our everyday lives.

There are some potential health concerns that we have control over and others we do not-the key is to focus on what we can proactively do to prevent or detect small problems before they become serious. Breast cancer is one of them.

"Breast cancer is a disease that kills more than 40,000 women every year, but is also one that, in many cases, can be detected and treated early," says Robert Kanterman, MD, Chief of Radiology at St. Luke's Hospital. "Every single woman should be following a breast care program-if she's not, now is a good time to start. It's one of the healthiest things she can do for herself in the new year."

So what exactly should a woman do? The American Cancer Society suggested guidelines to help detect cancer in its early stages when it's most treatable. St. Luke's Hospital agrees.

St. Luke's Hospital is dedicated to women's health and has seen the benefits of women taking care of themselves by following the suggested guidelines for finding breast cancer. The following are the American Cancer Society's guidelines proven most effective:

  1. All women should conduct a monthly breast self-examination.
  2. All women should have a yearly breast examination by their physician.
  3. All women over the age of 40 should have an annual mammogram.
(To learn details of each exam, including how to properly conduct your monthly self-exam, contact your physician.)

Mammography is an important step in these guidelines and St. Luke's Hospital employs technology to help detect breast cancer through screening mammography. The ImageChecker computer-aided detection system for breast imaging helps ensure accurate readings of screening mammograms.

According to the American Cancer Society, mammograms are highly accurate. On average, they detect 90% of breast cancer in women without symptoms, and save thousands of lives. St. Luke's radiologists use the ImageChecker to aid in reading all screening mammograms performed at St. Luke's Hospital. "We believe in the great health benefits of mammography," says Kanterman. "The ImageChecker is a huge asset to our hospital and patients in our fight against breast cancer."

Although St. Luke's Hospital is bringing you new technology to help in breast cancer detection, you must be active in your own health. Start a routine to last the rest of your life. It also is helpful to work out a plan with a friend to help you remember to do a monthly self-exam. Talk to your doctor about the benefits of your yearly physical exam. And, if you're over 40, take the proper precaution and schedule a mammogram.

For more information or to schedule a mammogram, call 314-205-6565.