Ask Dr. Ulissey | March

  • Thursday, March 16, 2017 12:30pm
  • Life

Q. I am trying to get my sister to come in for a mammogram, but she said she is afraid of the radiation.

A. I don’t think she should be – and let me explain it from a variety of directions. First, regardless of whether your sister ever gets a mammogram, her risk of getting breast cancer is about 1 in 8. Not the best odds, but we have proven scientifically that if we catch breast cancer early, we can likely save a life. Yet, if your sister never gets a mammogram, she will not avail herself of this early detection opportunity.

Next, let’s consider she does get routine mammograms. The chance of getting a radiation induced breast cancer is not zero, but it is extremely low. It has been equated to the chances of dying in a car wreck if you take a 300-mile road trip, which is hundreds of thousands of times better than 1 in 8.

So even if your sister, on the very odd chance, gets a radiation induced breast cancer, the benefit of getting yearly mammograms to detect that cancer early, and likely save her life, is way better than the odds she has of never getting a mammogram and still getting breast cancer, but not receiving the benefit of early detection.

Remember, friends don’t let friends skip mammograms.

Michael J. Ulissey, M.D., is a partner at the Breast Diagnostic Centers of Auburn and Federal Way. In addition to taking care of patients locally, he continues to participate in research as an adjunct professor at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center.

More in Life

Woman promotes Polynesian culture through community events, festivals

Holiday bazaar comes to Green River College on Saturday, Dec. 16

COURTESY PHOTO
Gallery 4Culture calling for artists

Solo, collaborative and group exhibition efforts wanted to help fill new season

Auburn Adventist Church’s Bethlehem show glows

Auburn Adventist Academy Church continued a tradition last week with nightly performance… Continue reading

‘Annie’ is here for the holidays

Heavier Than Air Family Theatre Company presents award-winning musical

Ask Dr. Ullissey | December 2017

Every year, the week after Thanksgiving, there is the world’s largest medical… Continue reading

Edgeview neighborhood collects toys, money for local efforts

The Edgeview neighborhood in Auburn continues to give back, celebrating the holiday… Continue reading

Lewis headlines jazz Christmas concert in Auburn

Lupino, Shibayama join in for Dec. 22 performance

Red Cross offers top 10 driving and other travel tips for the holidays

Travelers should plan ahead and expect delays as they head to destinations

Have breakfast with Santa on Dec. 9; registration open

Auburn Parks, Arts & Recreation hosts a Breakfast with Santa on Saturday,… Continue reading

Most Read