Pink! This color is internationally renowned for representing breast cancer awareness, and October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. 

While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to detect the disease in its early stages and/or encourage others to do the same. We have made a lot of progress, but as a society, we still have a long way to go.

With early detection, and if found in the localized stage (when cancer is confined within the breast), the 5-year relative survival rate is 100 percent. 

Screening exams and early-detection tests can find breast cancers even before they start to cause symptoms (such as a lump that can be felt). The earlier cancer is detected, the better.

When a patient is already experiencing symptoms, breast cancers tend to be larger and have oftentimes already spread beyond the breast. 

If breast cancer is found during a screening exam it is most often confined to the breast. Early detection versus symptom-based awareness often determines a patient’s prognosis for the disease, man or woman.

It’s important to talk to your provider about breast cancer and what you can do to stay up to date on screenings and early detection.

HRRMC offers free cervical cancer screenings and mammograms to qualifying patients, with wonderful health navigation to get you scheduled at your convenience.

Also, if cancer is detected, the Women’s Wellness Grant covers the cost of treatment for those qualifying patients.

Call the Women’s Wellness Grant community health worker, Melanie Critelli, for more information: 719-530-1065.

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