The Women’s Breast & Heart Initiative is a non-profit outreach organization dedicated to educating at-risk women about breast and heart health, and providing them with prevention resources to beat the odds of breast cancer and heart disease.
How to Get Low and No-Cost Mammograms
The Women’s Breast & Heart Initiative, based in Miami, partners with our local hospitals and cancer centers to arrange mammograms for you at no or low cost, regardless of whether you have insurance.
Call WBHI any time at 305-825-4081 to receive assistance scheduling your mammogram.
Covid-19 safety protocols will be observed.
What Is Breast Cancer?
Breast cancer is a disease in which cells in the breast grow out of control. There are different kinds of breast cancer. The kind of breast cancer depends on which cells in the breast turn into cancer. Breast cancer can begin in different parts of the breast.
A breast is made up of three main parts: lobules, ducts, and connective tissue. The lobules are the glands that produce milk. The ducts are tubes that carry milk to the nipple. The connective tissue (which consists of fibrous and fatty tissue) surrounds and holds everything together. Most breast cancers begin in the ducts or lobules.
Breast cancer can spread outside the breast through blood vessels and lymph vessels. When breast cancer spreads to other parts of the body, it is said to have metastasized.
Kinds of Breast Cancer
The most common kinds of breast cancer are:
- Invasive ductal carcinoma. The cancer cells begin in the ducts and then grow outside the ducts into other parts of the breast tissue. Invasive cancer cells can also spread, or metastasize, to other parts of the body.
- Invasive lobular carcinoma. Cancer cells begin in the lobules and then spread from the lobules to the breast tissues that are close by. These invasive cancer cells can also spread to other parts of the body.
Breast Cancer Statistics
- Breast Cancer is the 2nd most common cancer in women (after skin cancer).
- 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with Breast Cancer during their lifetime.
- 40,000 women die from Breast Cancer annually
- 11% of Breast Cancers are diagnosed in women under the age of 45.
- While some forms of Breast Cancer are related to genetic factors, 95% of Breast Cancers occur randomly.
- Early detection is the key to surviving Breast Cancer.
Early Detection is the Key
Your doctor will check your breasts and lymph nodes during your annual Women’s Wellness Exam, but Mammograms are the most common way that Breast Cancer is detected.
If an abnormality is detected in a Screening Mammogram, you may be sent for a Diagnostic Mammogram, Breast Ultrasound or Breast MRI. Pending those outcomes, a needle biopsy may be necessary to confirm a diagnosis of Breast Cancer.
At what age - and how often - to get a Mammogram (Recommendations depend on your personal risk factors. ) The recommended age to begin getting mammograms is between 40 and 44. Annual Mammograms are recommended for women ages 45 - 54. Starting at age 55, women should get Mammograms annually or every 2 years.
** If you have a family history of Breast Cancer (a first-degree relative, such as a parent, sibling or child), you’ll want to start getting Mammograms approximately 10 years before the age the relative was diagnosed (but not earlier than 25)
Factors that can increase your risk for Breast Cancer:
- A family history of Breast Cancer (a first-degree relative)
- Early start of Menstruation, Late Onset of Menopause
- Never having had a child
- Taking Hormone Replacement Therapy
- Taking Birth Control pills
- Smoking cigarettes
- Drinking alcohol
*Women of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage, African-American, Caribbean and Hispanic Women have a slightly higher risk of developing Breast Cancer.
Not all Breast cancers can be found with Mammography. YOU know your body best. If you notice any of the following, call your doctor right away.
- A lump, a hard knot, or thickening on the breast area or underarm.
- Swelling, warmth, redness, or darkening of the breast; itching or scaling.
- Change in the size or shape of the breast.
- Skin irritation, puckering or dimpling.
- Unexplained discharge.
- Pain in the breast that does not go away.
Eliminating risk factors under your control can greatly reduce your risk for Breast Cancer such as:
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Eat more fruits & vegetables
- Adopt an Active Lifestyle:
- Exercise regularly for about 30 minutes, 5 times a week.
- Even 10 minute sessions that add up to 30 minutes make a difference.
- Do activities you enjoy, whether it’s walking, gardening or cross-fit.
- Quit smoking.
- Limit alcohol intake.
- Get your regular mammogram, according to the recommended schedule.
Support the Women’s Breast & Heart Initiative
Help the Women’s Breast & Heart Initiative continue to Save Lives with Disease Prevention and Early Detection! Participating in their events is a fun way to support their work. You can also make donations directly through their website Donations page.
Spread the Word and Show You Care about Saving Lives with WBHI:
With bi-partisan support from the Florida State Legislature, the Women’s Breast & Heart Initiative has been approved for a Specialty License Plate. Proceeds will support their work, and you’ll be helping to Save Lives!
You can pre-order your Specialty License Plate benefiting the Women’s Breast & Heart Initiative on their website, here.
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