You might be seeing reminders in hot pink this month in Syracuse that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Today a portion of sidewalk outside the Civic Center on Montgomery Street was spray painted with a Pink Ribbon.
Onondaga County Legislator Deb Cody faithfully had her annual mammogram, until that one year she skipped it, 13 years ago.
“Just let it get by me and found a lump, and I went in, had stage three breast cancer. Which had I had my mammogram on time or before, I would have had earlier diagnosis,” said Cody.
As a breast cancer survivor, Cody also is an advocate for early detection.
“I just urge every one to encourage all the women around them to make sure they get that mammogram every year. If you have any inkling that any thing might be going on, go in.”
The County Health Department offers a cancer services program. Health Commissioner Dr. Indu Gupta says her department is there to help.
“If women are uninsured or under insured, that's where our program comes in the picture. We can not only provide the financial support to have the mammograms, but also do a lot of wrap around services support to them.”
Gupta said mammograms are generally recommended for those age 50 and older. She says family history can also mean women should get screened earlier between ages 40 to 49 but, they should discuss it with their doctor. Gupta encourages women not to delay.
“Getting a mammogram is so important, and I would remind every woman who is listening out there that I got my mammogram last month, won’t you get yours?” said Gupta.
To find out more about free cancer screenings offered by the county, call (315) 435-3653.