Take Action: Debunk the Myths this Breast Cancer Action Month
It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, or as we like to call it, Breast Cancer ACTION Month. Follow along as we debunk breast cancer screening myths, then join the movement by scheduling a mammogram and spreading the word!
Let’s Play True or False: Test Your Breast Cancer Knowledge!
“My dense breasts mean I’m more at risk for breast cancer.”
TRUE → Whether you have fatty tissue or dense breast tissue—it’s okay! It’s just important information for you and your doctor to know when determining the best screening pathway for you. Dense breasts make it harder to see potential cancers in your mammogram because they have more fibrous and glandular tissue than fatty tissue.1 That’s why it’s important to know your status! Prioritize your health and schedule a screening.
“Not that many women actually have dense breasts.”
FALSE → Nearly 50% of women aged 40 and older have dense breasts.1 Take it from Amy—a 46-year-old mom and software engineer. She recently had her routine mammogram when she received a letter in the mail from the breast center letting her know she had very dense breasts. Read more about her story.
“I can feel how dense my breasts are with a self-exam.”
FALSE → A mammogram is the ONLY way to be sure if you have dense breasts1, which can elevate your risk of breast cancer. So if you don’t know, don’t wait! Talk to your doctor and book a 3D™ screening. Only the Genius exam is FDA-approved as superior for women with dense breasts compared to 2D alone.3,4
“I have a lump. It must be cancer!”
FALSE → Many lumps turn out to be harmless, but if you notice one, don’t ignore it! A cancerous lump will feel hard and immovable to you (like a lemon seed!) and can be any shape or size. Make an appointment with your doctor and find out for sure.
“One and done. I got the mammogram and now I’m good for life.”
FALSE → You need to get screened for breast cancer regularly. Not just once! Current guidelines recommend annual mammograms for those aged 40 and older. You can learn more about the updates here! Talk to your doctor about a screening schedule that’s right for you. Keep in mind there’s a 99% chance of a 5+ year survival rate when breast cancer is caught early.2
“There are 12 symptoms of breast cancer I could have.”
TRUE → Download the Know Your Lemons award-winning app to learn about each symptom, calculate your personal risk, get a custom screening plan, learn how to self-exam, and get reminders to stay abreast of your health! Even if you only have one symptom you should call your doctor immediately.
“My birth control pills put me at a higher risk for breast cancer.”
IT DEPENDS → Not all of these pills increase your risk, but some can. It’s best to talk to your doctor about your specific medications.
Screen for Breast Cancer Earlier. Catch it Earlier.
Breast screening has contributed to a 29% reduction in the number of women diagnosed with breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.5 Get the word out and help educate a friend. Have them test their knowledge and schedule their mammogram, too! Something as simple as starting a conversation could change someone’s outlook, or even save a life.
The content in this piece is for information purposes only and is not intended to be medical advice. Please contact your medical professional for specific advice regarding your health and treatment. This information may be relevant in the U.S. and other markets and is not intended as a product solicitation or promotion where such activities are prohibited. Because Hologic materials are distributed through websites, eBroadcasts, and tradeshows, it is not always possible to control where such materials appear. For specific information on what products may be available in a particular country, please write to email@example.com.
The Genius® 3D MAMMOGRAPHY™ exam (a.k.a. Genius® exam) is acquired on the Hologic® 3D Mammography™ system and consists of a 2D and 3D image set, where the 2D image can be either an acquired 2D image or a 2D image generated from the 3D image set. The Genius exam is only available on the Hologic 3D Mammography system. Please consult your physician for a complete list of benefits and risks associated with mammography.
Hologic, 3D, 3D Mammography, Genius, and associated logos are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of Hologic, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries in the United States and/or other countries.
1. National Cancer Institute. Dense Breasts: Answers to Commonly Asked Questions. https://www.cancer.gov/types/breast/breast-changes/dense-breasts. Accessed August 2023.
2. National Breast Cancer Foundation. Breast Cancer Facts & Stats. https://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/breast-cancer-facts/. Accessed August 2023.
3. FDA submissions P080003, P080003/S001, P080003/S004, P080003/S005.
4. Friedewald SM, Rafferty EA, Rose SL, et al. Breast cancer screening using tomosynthesis in combination with digital mammography. JAMA. 2014 Jun 25;311(24):2499-507.
5. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Health and Economic Benefits of Breast Cancer Interventions. https://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/programs-impact/pop/breast-cancer.htm. Accessed August 2023.