Journalist Katie Couric recently shared her diagnosis of breast cancer, which was detected thanks to a mammogram.
Ruth Oratz, MD, a medical oncologist at NYU Langone Health’s Perlmutter Cancer Center, tells BuzzFeed News that mammograms are an important part of healthcare.
“Breast cancer screening saves lives,” says Dr. Oratz, also a clinical professor in the Department of Medicine at NYU Grossman School of Medicine. “Because Katie Couric went for a screening mammogram, her breast cancer was detected when it was small and curable.”
Ms. Couric was six months overdue for a mammogram when the cancer was detected. Nancy Chan, MD, a medical oncologist and clinical research director for breast cancer at Perlmutter Cancer Center, says that delays in mammograms during the pandemic led to delays in diagnosing breast cancer.
“We definitely saw an increase in the number of skipped mammograms during 2020 and 2021; unfortunately for some women, this led to a delay in diagnosis,” says Dr. Chan, also a member of the faculty in the Department of Medicine. “It is understandable that the pandemic has been a challenge and led some to skip their mammogram. I would encourage women who haven’t had their annual mammograms to schedule it and get back on their individual screening schedule.”
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