Breast Cancer Awareness month is increasing mammograms - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Breast Cancer Awareness month is increasing mammograms

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Arlene Schafer had breast cancer, twice.

"By going in early and having it checked, that helped me and I have no problems with it now."

The first time was 15 years ago. The second time was in March and she's been in remission for three weeks.

"I'm cancer free. So I'm all ready to start again! But not on cancer."

The journey wasn't easy for Schafer, but it began with a mammogram. That's what detected a lump for Monica Santa too.

"There's no way I could have been able to feel this, it could have been years," says Santa.

Dr. Alan Engel, radiologist, says detecting a lump early, saves lives.

"Research has shown that woman who get mammograms are 30-50% less likely to die from breast cancer than woman who don't get mammograms," says Engel.

That's why at Memorial's Breast Care Center doctors and nurses are stressing the importance of annual mammograms and what better time to remind women then during October? Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

"Because there's so much awareness in the community, everybody's coming in with pink hairdos you know, they are just more in tuned with it. So we see a larger crowd of women coming in," says nurse Lynn Sobecki.

She says this place has been packed with patients. 

"Breast Cancer Awareness month does increase our volume, maybe by 40%, there's more patients we see each day," says Sobecki.

"The sooner you can find it, whether it be good news or bad news, the sooner you can find it, you're on your way," says Schafer.

It's a scary, but worthwhile journey.

"It's life changing, but it can be good life changing," says Santa.

But when the journey's over, "I'm going to travel, how's that?" says Schafer. And there's reason to celebrate.

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