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Chatham County Public Health encourages regular breast screenings for women

Posted Wednesday, October 26, 2011

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Pittsboro, NC - This year more than 1,350 women will die of breast cancer in North Carolina and another 8,507 will be diagnosed, according to the N.C. State Center for Health Statistics. Spreading the message that early detection and prompt treatment of breast cancer saves lives is a message that everyone needs to hear.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, dedicated to increasing awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer, celebrating the lives of the many women who survived, and remembering those lost.

Throughout October, the Chatham County Public Health Department will spotlight breast cancer, including offering low to no-cost breast exams, pelvic exams, pap smears and mammograms to women between 50 to 64 years old who meet the program requirements. During this period, some women may qualify for screening incentives at the public health clinic. Call 919-742-5641 to see if you qualify and to schedule an appointment.

Breast cancer remains the most frequently occurring cancer in women and is the second leading cause of cancer deaths of women in North Carolina, but early diagnosis can make a difference. Ninety-six percent of women who find and treat breast cancer early will be cancer-free after five years.
Chatham County Public Health encourages all women to take charge of their health having regular breast screenings, which are aimed at detecting cancer before noticeable signs or symptoms are present. The three breast screening options are:

* Breast self-exam is when you check your own breasts for lumps, swelling, changes in size or shape of the breast, and any other changes in the breast or underarm.

* Clinical breast exam is a breast exam by a doctor or nurse, who uses his or her hands to identify lumps or other changes in the entire breast area.

* Mammogram is an X-ray of the breast. Mammograms are the best method to detect breast cancer early when it is easier to treat and before it is big enough to feel or cause other symptoms.
"We urge every woman to talk with her healthcare provider about which screening is right for her," said Chatham County Public Health Director Holly Coleman.
Many local health departments offer free breast screenings, education and referral services to eligible women through the NC Breast and Cervical Cancer Control Program (BCCCP). To learn more about the NC BCCCP, visit<> or call 919-707-5300.

Debra J. Henzey
Director of Community Relations
Chatham County, NC

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Chatham County Public Health encourages regular breast screenings for women
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