Be vigilant about your breast health:
- Regularly perform breast self-exams. Learn how to do a self-exam at cancer.org.
- Schedule yearly mammograms after you turn 40. These are covered by insurance.
- Learn your family’s health history, and make sure to inform your gynecologist. A woman whose mother, sister, or daughter is diagnosed with breast cancer is almost twice as likely to develop it herself. However, over 85% of women who develop breast cancer don’t have a family history of the disease.
- If your family has a history of cancer, mammograms and genetic testing are recommended — even if you are young.
Linking Genetics to Breast Cancer: Lifesaving Screening Tools
Genetic researchers have identified certain genes present in women who are more likely to develop breast cancer. They are called BRCA1 and BRCA2; you may have read about them, as knowledge of the genetic impact on breast cancer development becomes more widespread.
Women who possess one or both of the breast cancer genes are more likely to develop breast or ovarian cancer. The risk can be as high as four out of five.
If You Are BRCA-Positive, Here’s What You Need to Know
BRCA-positive women (those who possess one or both of the BRCA genes) may choose to undergo a prophylactic mastectomy before they develop breast cancer. Instead of worrying about the possibility of breast cancer, these women can take advantage of new techniques for breast reconstruction.
Surgeons at Omega Hospital Integrative Breast Center perform prophylactic mastectomy and breast reconstruction on women from all over the world each year. Because we know that comfort and appearance are paramount when it comes to breast reconstruction, we are committed to giving women beautiful, natural breasts to replace the ones they had before mastectomy.
To determine whether prophylactic mastectomy is the right step for you, schedule a consultation with our surgeons, or browse before and after photos of breast reconstruction.