All posts in Breast Health

Our Mammography Coordinator Shines a Light on Breast Health Screening

October’s Women’s Health Blog Series – Part Two

Studies have shown that mammography has helped reduced breast cancer mortality in the United States. Yet, many women lead a busy life and can’t find the time needed to schedule and get a mammogram. It’s a barrier that’s keeping countless women from receiving the preventive care they need to protect their health and their future.

Sauk Prairie Healthcare has been addressing the issue for the last year by offering Walk-In Wednesdays, where you can receive your annual screening mammogram with no appointment. The convenience and flexibility of Walk-In Wednesdays has already made it possible for more than 100 women to receive a mammogram in the last six months.

For others, fear and misconceptions prevent them from getting screened. Sauk Prairie Healthcare Mammography Coordinator, Rhonda Orozco, helps shine a light on common myths and addresses the questions and concerns she hears from patients each day.

Does a mammogram hurt?   

Orozco: It may be uncomfortable, but it should not be painful. If it does hurt, be sure to let the technician know so that they can make adjustments.

Is a mammogram more uncomfortable if I have smaller breasts? 

Orozco: Breast size does not matter and should not affect the mammogram.

Can I still receive a mammogram if I have breast implants? 

Orozco: Yes! We start with the standard four views using slight compression and then we shift the implant in all four views and compress just the breast tissue.

What are the current recommendations for mammography? 

Orozco: Not all organizations agree on mammography guidelines. For instance, The American Cancer Society, The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and other organizations recommend women begin annual screening at age 40. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends women begin screening at age 50 and repeat every two years.

We encourage you to discuss your options with your doctor so that you can decide together what is best for you.

Do I need to do anything to prepare for my mammogram?

 Orozco: There are several things you can do to be sure the process runs smoothly. Try to avoid scheduling your mammogram during the week before your menstrual cycle. Your breasts are more tender during this time and the picture isn’t always as clear. If you have breast implants, be sure to note that when scheduling the appointment. Avoid wearing a dress so that you can undress from the waist up and don’t wear any deodorant, perfume, lotion or powder the day of your appointment since they can create shadows on the mammogram.

When will I get the results of my mammogram? 

Orozco: If the mammogram is normal, you will receive a letter in the mail notifying you of that. If the radiologist sees a change or abnormality in your mammogram and wants to have additional views, then you will receive a phone call within 48 hours.

Don’t let anything keep you from getting the preventive care you need to stay healthy. If you have questions or concerns regarding your breast health, schedule an appointment to talk with your doctor. If you’re due for a routine screening mammogram and can’t find time to make an appointment, visit Sauk Prairie Hospital for Walk-In Wednesdays where you can receive your annual screening mammogram with no appointment.

To comply with most health insurance requirements, you must bring your health insurance card and know the name of your primary care doctor and the facility where you received your last mammogram. Walk-In Wednesdays are only available for screening mammograms and it must be at least 12 months from your previous screening. If your doctor has referred you for a mammogram due to specific concerns regarding your breast health, please make an appointment by calling (608) 643-7274.

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Our Women’s Health Nurse Navigator Shines a Light on Breast Biopsies

October’s Women’s Health Blog Series – Part One

After receiving abnormal results on a routine screening mammogram, many women are referred for a breast biopsy. Although the process can be unpleasant and stressful for some, the biopsies often reveal benign findings.

Fortunately, Sauk Prairie Healthcare’s Women’s Health Nurse Navigator, Teresa Dietsch, is present for each and every breast biopsy at Sauk Prairie Hospital. She guides patients through the process to ensure timely diagnosis. Dietsch helps the patient to understand the results of the biopsy and supports them throughout treatment if the biopsy reveals cancer. Dietsch serves as an educational resource but can also provide the emotional support that the patient and their family needs as they cope.

Dietsch sat down with us to answer a few of the questions she often receives from patients undergoing a breast biopsy.

What is a biopsy?

Dietsch: A breast biopsy is a procedure that examines the area of tissue that was identified as abnormal during a mammogram to determine if it is cancerous. There are three main types of biopsies: a fine needle biopsy, a core needle biopsy and a surgical biopsy.

What is the procedure like?

Dietsch: The three different types of biopsies each require slightly different procedures. The size, location and appearance of the abnormal area on your ultrasound or mammogram determine what kind of biopsy you will have.

A fine needle biopsy uses a very thin needle to withdraw a small amount of fluid from the area identified as abnormal. A local anesthetic may be used to numb the area.

A core needle biopsy uses a hollow needle to withdraw cores of tissue from the abnormal area. The doctor often uses a local anesthetic to numb the area.

A surgical biopsy, or an open biopsy, involves making an incision in the breast and removing all or a section of the lump so that it can be examined under a microscope. The procedure is usually done in the hospital’s outpatient area using local or general anesthesia.

Why do I need a biopsy?

Dietsch: When a doctor finds something abnormal during a mammogram or ultrasound, they need to further investigate the results. It’s not always possible to tell from the imaging tests whether a growth or change in tissue is benign– a biopsy is the only way to determine if it’s cancerous. However, just because the doctor refers you for a biopsy doesn’t mean you have cancer. In fact, the National Breast Cancer Foundation estimates that 80% of women who have breast biopsies do not have breast cancer.

When will I get the results?

Dietsch: The tissue sample is sent to the pathologist where it is processed and analyzed. This can take time and you may need to wait anywhere from a few days to a week to hear back from your doctor.

If you have questions or concerns regarding your breast health, schedule an appointment to talk with your doctor. If you’re due for a routine screening mammogram, visit Sauk Prairie Healthcare for Walk-In Wednesdays where you can receive your annual screening mammogram with no appointment.

For more information regarding Teresa Dietsch and her role as Women’s Health Nurse Navigator, click here.

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Shining a Light on Sauk Prairie

Today, pink lights are going up on 100 light poles throughout Sauk City and Prairie du Sac.

We would like to give our sincere appreciation to Ever Ready Electric as well as Village of Sauk City, Sauk City Utilities and Prairie du Sac Utility for assisting us in putting up pink lights. We would also like to acknowledge Sauk Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce for their support.

You can help us turn all of Sauk Prairie pink! In order to raise awareness throughout the community, we have pink light bulbs for homes and pink light strings for businesses available for free. Learn more by clicking here.

Pink Lights in Sauk Prairie

Back: Paul Kippley and Gregg Coenen with Prairie du Sac Utilities; Les Ballweg with Ever Ready Electric; John Nachreiner, Mat Robison and Travis Anen with Sauk City Utilities
Front: Kaiyzer Ballweg and Scott Ballweg with Ever Ready Electric; Hank Luech with Sauk City Utilities

 

 

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Ever Ready Electric hanging lights on October 1.

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Ever Ready Electric hanging lights on October 1.

Pink lights in Sauk Prairie

Ever Ready Electric hanging lights on October 1.

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