Breast cancer survivors refute new mammogram report

By Gene Petriello - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email
RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Some doctors and cancer survivors simply do not agree with a new study concerning who should and should not get mammograms, including some doctors at the Massey Cancer Center.
If it wasn't for a routine mammogram about a year ago, Heather Renehan would never know, she had breast cancer.
"I'd be walking around with at least a quarter of my left breast with cancer because it was very widespread," said Heather. 
The reality of the deadly disease is even scarier. "If it hadn't been for my radiologist, I very well wouldn't been here today. I'd like to feel my husband and three very young children feel the same way."
Now just a day away from her post cancer 6 month check up, she is shocked to learn about the government-backed report that indicates women don't need mammograms in their forties -- unless they're at risk. The report says the bad results from the test could out weight the benefits.
"Aren't false positives worth saving my life?," asked Heather. "A mammogram isn't perfect. But, it's the best screen we have and everyone needs it."
That's the question many women are asking today. As calls are coming into to Dr. Gilda Cardenosa's office.
"We normally don't get any calls historically. So, just one call is more than we normally would get about this," said the doctor.
She's one of many doctors arguing against this new study. Now, breast cancer survivors like Terrell Harringan, along with Heather, are adding their objections to the growing list.
"To wait until your 50s, you won't have those people around if you have to wait that long," said Terrell. 
"There's no reason why I would ever have found this on my own," said Heather. 

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