Oct 12, 2017 by Marlin Duncan
Since early detection is key to successfully treating breast cancer, older adults who make it a priority to go to the doctor for an annual screening have a better chance of beating cancer. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, meaning all senior women should take some time out of their schedule to make sure they are free from this life-threatening disease. Let’s take a closer look at some of the risk factors of breast cancer as well as what can be expected during a screening and treatment plans in Hazleton, PA.
Research has proven that there are several primary risk factors that can increase a woman’s chance of developing breast cancer. These risk factors include age, adolescent weight gain, no pregnancy or late pregnancy, late menopause, post-menopausal weight gain, increased breast tissue density, chest radiation as a child, and a long-term use of oral contraceptives.
Since aging can lead to an increased risk of abnormal changes in the cells, older women are more likely to develop breast cancer. It’s important to note that although these are risk factors, the majority of senior woman with one or even a couple of these risk factors do not get breast cancer.
Seniors should make every effort to visit their healthcare provider for a screening this October and our home care agency can offer transportation services, and any additional personal care services you or your loved one in Hazleton, PA my require.
Senior women who get an annual screening will do so through a mammogram, an X-ray of the breast that can detect cancer before any physical symptoms such as a lump or pain arise. The mammogram will be performed in a private room with an X-ray technician who will provide an older woman with a gown to wear. Women who have trouble getting dressed or undressed because of conditions like arthritis find that services from a home care agency can be a big help during medical screenings and appointments.
The X-ray technician will place each of the woman’s breasts between two plastic plates. Although this mammogram procedure may be uncomfortable, it is essential as it allows the breast tissue to spread and flatten so that a clear image of the breast can be created.
If the mammogram does not reveal any issues, senior women can expect to receive a letter within 30 days of the procedure informing them that their results were normal. However, if doctors locate something suspicious, they will contact you within 5 days to perform further testing.
In the event that breast cancer is detected, a medical team will determine its stage and design an appropriate treatment plan. Surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and hormone therapy are four of the most common breast cancer treatments. A senior woman’s stage, clinical history, and preferences are all taken into consideration before a treatment is prescribed.
If your senior loved one in the Hazleton, PA that could benefit from in home care and personal care services, contact us or call (570) 483-8913 for more information. Our care coordinators would be more than happy to answer any of your questions and help you schedule your free in-home consultation.