Featured Story

Our voice will be heard

Mother, sister and maternal aunt...I have had mammograms since age sister got it at 41, Mother 62, maternal aunt died at 48. Dr Amy Bremner found mine through a mammogram one week after my 70th birthday. Dr Bremner, my OBGYN and I could not feel it. It was infiltrating so if I hadn't had a mammogram I may not be telling my story. I am in a Clinical Trial ... IORT. I am thankful and grateful for the fine doctors at Breastlink....
Carole C.
My mother got diagnosed with breast cancer at age 52, I was 25 at the time. She is 20yr+ survivor and I have had mammograms yearly since I was age 26. The younger you get diagnosed the worse the outcome seems to be, so why would the government take away a screen method when breast cancer caught early is curable.
Grace H.
I am mammographer and I have seen first hand how yearly mammograms save lives! I support mammograms at age 40 not 50!!!!
Sherry B.
I'm turning 40 this year and would be very upset if my insurance did not cover mammograms. Although there is not a direct line to me, my mother-in-law has gone through 2 rounds of Breast Cancer and I believe it should be every women's right have their insurance cover their screening studies starting at age 40.
Jennifer P.
I am a Primary Care NP. I have been in practice for almost 7 years. During that time, I have diagnosed 4 females under the age of 40 with different stages of breast cancer (3 African Americans, and 1 Caucasian). I have resorted to telling my patients to pay for their mammograms starting at age 38-40. If caught early, breast cancer is treatable. Early detection is key!
Nora A.
The earlier the better. Help us save lives.
I have known several women who would have benefited from mammo starting in their 40's.
Christopher Z.
My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer early & her life was saved. She is a 11 year survivor due to early detection.
Cheryl G.
My sister was only 29 when she was diagnosed with ductal breast cancer in the year '69 when very little was available about what protocol to pursue. She was given a radial mastectomy on one breast. She went thru chemo and cobalt radiation. She died 5 years later. She left behind 4 young children.It was very hard on all our family, but I researched only to find very little in those days. 15 years later I was diagnosed at 49 with a large lump. If I could have had a mammogram earlier, I probably could have had a lumpectomy with no chemo. I urgently feel mammograms should be listed as a routine check at 40 (or even earlier if family history.) Thank you, Judie Looney
Judie L.
Jacky O.
I have very dense breast tissue. My mother and my sisters as well. Waiting until it's too late to discover an issue is not an option. With monthly self breast exams, annual mammograms and well-woman check ups, I believe the four of us are doing the right thing by our health. Catching an early cancer is important for ALL women!
Linda P.
No story just know others that have had breast cancer
Joyce D.
Requested a mammogram at age 36 secondary to possible nodule felt on self breast exam. Calcifications were noted in my right breast. Underwent a breast biopsy, pathology was negative for malignancy. Although path was negative, had it remained there until I was 50 may have resulted in different outcome.
Chelsea H.
This is about insurance companies trying to increase their profits. I have been a mammogram technologist for over 30 years, and I can tell you that there have been many instances where we have caught a woman's breast cancer with a routine screening mammogram while she was in her 40's. The earlier it is found, the better her chance of survival. If we had not started screening those women until they were 50, it would have been too late.
2 sisters were both diagnosed with Breast cancer in their early 40's due to routine mammogram screening. Without this preventative measure, it may have gone undiagnosed and their success would have been severely in jeopardy. This needs to remain at 40.
Breast cancer was detected in my family members before age 50. Keep the mammogram age at 40.
I went to my primary care doctor for a check up in March and she said, "You are 40, guess what that means...". I took my order for my first mammogram downstairs to the radiology department and had what I considered a rite of passage for adult females. The session ended with the radiology tech saying, "That wasn't so bad, see you next year!"
Three days later I got a call for additional imaging. My mother and friends reassured me that it was just because it was my first one, a baseline needed to be established. I felt positive as I went back in and underwent my second mammogram and also an ultrasound.
Four days later, I received a phone call telling me that I needed FIVE doctor appointments. I barely remember the phone call it was such a blur. I went in and had my biopsies and appointments with a surgeon and radiologist. On April 13th I met again with the surgeon and he read my pathology report to me. He explained that my left breast was full of precancerous calcifications (stage 0) and that I had one stage 1 Invasive Ductal Carcinoma tumor that was a grade 3 (the most aggressive type). Since this news it has been a whirlwind of doctor appointments ranging from oncology to plastic surgery. My bilateral mastectomy is scheduled for May 24 but that will be only the beginning of my journey. I am so grateful for my PCP to tell me to get the mammogram. I am 40 years old and I have breast cancer. I am a runner, weightlifter, organic food eater, mother of 4, with no family history of early breast cancer. #40not50
Lisa V.
I was diagnosed 12 years ago, at 48, with invasive lobular breast cancer. A mammogram at age 50 would have been too late.
I recently had a masectomy , my wish for all is to be cancer free
Breast cancer can be cured, it's called EARLY DETECTION! Keep the age for mammograms to begin at 40.
Brenda hageman
I was diagnosed at 45!
As a breast imaging specialist I decided to show show my patients, using our own patient database, how women in their 40s who had their cancers found on screening mammograms did compared to those who waited to find an lump to come in.
Screeners had smaller cancers (1.4 vs 2.4cm)
with 3x more stage 0 at time of dx, more had negative nodes (83% vs 62%), Twice as many needed NO chemo. Interestingly, 10% of screening cancers were found on their BASELINE study (ave age 42). Screeners had half as many had high grade (aggressive) cancers.
These improved numbers were found in a population where only 22% of women came religiously every yr and another 25% came every other year. Think of what could be if ALL women came every year!
If a woman had a cancer found as a lump within a year of a normal mammogram, there was an 80% chance she had dense breasts and would have benefited from additional screening with ultrasound or MRI.
Ladies, SCREENING WORKS IN 40-49 yr olds!
Dense tissue x 30 years; since mid-20's.
I have received mammograms since age 40 every year. Thankfully I have always had good reports. This is comforting to me and eases my mind.
Less than one month after my 30th birthday i found a lump in my right breast. I went to the doctor and within a week was diagnosed with breast cancer after a mammogram and ultrasound and a biopsy. I was then tested for the BRCA gene mutation and underwent a bilateral mastectomy. I am still undergoing chemo with 5 rounds left followed by four weeks of radiation. I think screening should start at 40 not 50 so we can save the lives of our women!!
I have friends who are survivors.
My aunt pass away at 58 of breast cancer my second aunt is fighting Brest cancer right now
Claudia M.
Dr. West,
You are so correct in your drive to make 40 the age to begin screening! Your perseverance, experience and clinical expertise should make the USPSTF agree!
Not only am I a mammographer and have seen first hand the damage that is done to women who are late in the staging of breast cancer but two of my dear and young friend have been diagnosed before their 40 th birthday.
Susan B.
I am a healthcare professional in Gyn and have sen numerous cases of breast cancer in the 40-50 year old range, screening being the only way an abnormality was detected.
Kerri E.
My best friend was diagnosed at age 42 with stage 4 breast cancer that was found by chance. If exams where required at 40 it would have been found sooner.
Carole N.
I am a hairdresser, so I come in contact with a large number of people on a personal level. I hear many stories of family members, friends, and co-workers being diagnosed with breast cancer. Many before age 50, several before age 40 and some even before age 30!! One of my work family members was diagnosed in her early thirties. She lost her 11 year battle leaving behind 2 daughters. She watched her eldest daughters graduation ceremony via video from her hospital bed just days before she passed. Another work family member was diagnosed near age 50 and passed as well. My 3 step-son's biological mother was diagnosed the first time at age 39-40 and the second time at age 48-49...both times were discovered via mammogram. A long time personal client was diagnosed in her early thirties. There you have 4 women just in my own personal circle of people who have been diagnosed with breast cancer prior to age 50. I participated in the "Ride Across Maryland" for breast cancer for 10 years and listened to countless other stories from young women that were diagnosed, many of them before age 50. I want my daughters-in-law, my granddaughter, and all of the other young women in my life to have access to early screening. EARLY DETECTION IS KEY!!!
Kimberly T.
Breast Cancer does not care that you are not yet 50.
Mammograms have saved the lives of many woman under 50.

40 NOT 50!
Michele E.
I had two aunts that passed from cancer. One was originally a breast cancer survior that later died from pancreatic cancer. The other died from breast cancer many years ago. Early detection is key to giving the best chance at survival.
Natasha D.
I just want to support this important petition
Jodi K.
I support women starting mammograms at the age of 40!!!
Toni W.
My wife lost her mother to breast cancer at 51. Proper screening would have saved her life. She never met her grandchildren.
Tom M.
I have a family history of breast cancer on both my mother and fathers side. I belive early detection is the best out come for beating breast cancer. If the guildlines stay the same we will be missing alot of early diagnosis for this cancer.
Courtney A.
I know many younger women in their 40's who were saved because of early screening for breast cancer by getting a mammogram. Including my sister who was diagnosed at the age of 43. She was able to beat this disease due to early diagnosis. This also goes for pap smears for women. They changed it to every three years. Had this been 20 years ago, I would have been dead!
Cheryl D.