Breast Cancer: Are You at Risk?

Sowmya Thanneeru, MD Union Primary Care of Elkton


About 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime.

In fact, breast cancer is the most common form of cancer among American women except for skin cancer. Growing older, having a family history of breast cancer, and having dense breast tissue are all risk factors that women cannot change. Here is Dr. Sowmya Thanneeru, from Union Primary Care, to discuss more about lifestyle changes that are within your control to help reduce your risk, and the importance of early detection through mammograms.

The 5-year survival rate for breast cancer diagnosed at an early stage when the cancer cells have not spread is 99%.

What can I do to protect myself?
Detecting breast cancer early is the key to beating the disease. And the key to early detection is a regular mammogram screening.

  • Age 40–44: Women should have the choice to start screenings if they wish to do so.
  • Age 45–54: Women should get a mammogram every year.
  • Age 55+: Women can switch to having a mammogram every two years or continue with a yearly screening for the rest of their life.

Here are some additional healthy habits that can help reduce your risk for breast cancer.

  1. Limit your alcohol. The risk of breast cancer is 20 percent higher for women who consume 2-3 alcoholic drinks per day.
  2. Don’t smoke. A study found that women who smoked for more than two decades tripled their risk of dying from breast cancer or any other cause.
  3. Control your weight. After menopause, being overweight or obese increases your risk.
  4. Stay physically active. Regular exercise appears to reduce the risk of breast cancer by 10 to 20 percent, especially in postmenopausal women.

Today is the day and now is the time to save your life.

Yes, we understand. Life is busy with family, work and countless other things to do every day. But doesn’t it make sense to find just one hour in your schedule to make an appointment that could save your life?

Call our Breast Health Center at 410-392-7075 to schedule your mammogram today!