High Point Regional hosts breast cancer awareness event

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- High Point Regional hosted an event to help women know their risk factors when it comes to breast cancer.

It was part of the health system’s ongoing series of community events.

Women who attended asked questions and health leaders pushed the importance of mammograms – providing information regarding conflicting guidelines.

However, a great focus of the event included encouraging women to know their family history.

A questionnaire was provided to identify family members who may have had certain forms of cancer.

“For breast cancer, we’ll ask has mom been affected with breast cancer or any sisters, but we also look a little deeper than that, we go three generations,” said Lynne Norris, an oncology nurse navigator.

Family history can indicate a person’s risk.

But even if a person doesn’t have a family history of breast cancer, that doesn’t mean a mammogram isn’t necessary.

“She thinks nobody in the family has had breast cancer, so ‘I’m not really at risk,’ and that is actually not the truth. Turns out 90 percent of breast cancers arise and it’s the first person in the family to have it,” said Dr. Van Fletcher, gynecologist at UNC Regional Physicians.

Survivor Linda Myers had breast cancer in 1975 and is thankful for the community discussions.

“There wasn’t much available in 1975, so it’s wonderful what all has happened in breast cancer treatment in these years,” she said.

High Point Regional is also in the beginning stages of starting a program for people at a high risk of getting breast cancer.

The next community event is Oct. 18 at 6 p.m. at the Millis Regional Health Education Center.

The topic is “Closing the Loop: Breast Reconstruction.” The event is free, but registration is necessary.

Call (336) 878-6888 to register.