July 13, 2011 (ATLANTA) — Georgia Cancer Specialists (GCS) physician Dr. Ruth R. Sarmiento recently appeared on the Fox 5 News Health Watch segment to talk about a new mammogram study confirming that more regular screening beginning at a younger age saves lives.
Dr. Sarmiento addresses the controversy that began in 2009 when the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, despite protests from breast cancer experts and advocates, recommended against routine mammograms for women in their forties and said women in their fifties should get mammograms just every other year. However, a recent Swedish study that followed 130,000 for twenty-nine years re-affirms what many doctors had believed all along. The researchers found that the number of women saved from breast cancer increases with each year of screening. The research showed that in 1,000 women screened for ten years, three breast cancer deaths were prevented.
GCS – a Top 10 cancer practice in the U.S. – and Dr. Sarmiento advocate women getting their baseline mammograms starting at age 40, and once a year after that. However, if your family has a history of breast cancer you should start screening as early as your twenties. Dr. Sarmiento recommends women of all ages perform a breast self-exam once a month. She cautions against not being proactive about screening just because you are young.
“Be your own advocate. Speak up if there is something wrong with your body,” Dr. Sarmiento advises women, “You should know your body. Demand to be heard.”
Breast cancer is the second largest cause of cancer death among U.S. women, after lung cancer. It kills 500,000 people globally every year and is diagnosed in close to 1.3 million people around the world.
Georgia Cancer Specialists is a Top 10 private cancer practice in the U.S. and a leader in advanced cancer treatment and research. The practice supports more than 200,000 patient visits each year. GCS offers community-based medical oncology and hematology services and is the first private oncology practice to also provide a full range of support services for patients in Georgia, including nutritional counseling, pain management, wellness counseling, and home health coordination. The GCS research department, whose focus is bringing targeted cancer therapy to communities, is the first in Georgia to offer Phase I clinical trials, the most novel cancer therapies available. GCS has 31 offices, 45 physicians, and more than 500 support staff members located in Metro Atlanta, North and Central Georgia, and Southwest North Carolina. Georgia Cancer Specialists can be found on the web at www.gacancer.com. GCS is The Cancer Answer.