Why Are So Many Louisiana Women Scared of Getting a Mammogram?
I Lost My Mother to Breast Cancer and I Swore That I Would Be Proactive.
My mother was only 52 when she died. As I grew older I realize how young she was. My gynecologist suggested that I get genetic testing done to have a clear picture of what my risks are.
What Is Genetic Testing and Why Does It Matter to Us?
The BRCA gene test is simple, you get your blood drawn and you find out if you have mutations in your DNA which increases the risk of breast or ovarian cancer. I would be lying if I said I wasn't scared out of my mind. I didn't want to hear what I already knew. According to the Mayo Clinic "People who inherit mutations in these genes are at an increased risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer compared with the general population."
After Getting My BRCA Test Results Back My Heart Sank and I Was Faced With Some Decisions.
If you have lost a parent or someone related to you to cancer it's a thought that consumes you. Because of the test results I now have to get a mammogram and see a fabulous Breast Surgical Oncologist annually.
What Does a Mammogram Feel Like? Why Don't We Openly Talk About It?
My mammogram was scheduled and I was nervous. I’m 32 and I feel like I am too young to be going through this, but I promised myself I would be proactive. I asked so many women what it felt like and no description felt good enough for me. I was told, "It hurts" and "It is very uncomfortable".
No One Actually Described What a Mammogram Felt Like, So Here Is My Best Description of What It Feels Like.
Imagine that you are really hot and you just want relief and you try to put your boobs in the fridge thinking it’ll bring relief from the heat. Instead, you squish your boobs over and over again while someone who didn’t pay for dinner or even smile or say “nice” when you whipped your boobs out is maneuvering them trying to squeeze them into the fridge. All that is happening is your boobs are being smashed over and over again by the fridge door. Eventually, you both give up knowing the boobs won’t fit in the fridge. And you both walk away. The end." In short, it feels like your boobs got caught in the fridge door.
If You Have Been Scared to Schedule Your Mamogram, Don't Be.
Yes, it's uncomfortable, yes, I was super nervous, but we are strong women who do hard things. We take all the preventative steps possible. You got this baby girl!