Local nurse practitioner Michelle Bautista is showing a patient how to do a self breast exam.
"Many women aren't comfortable doing breast exams and will not seek the professionals opinion about anything they feel may be unusual and abnormal for them,” says Bautista.
Bautista says many times women put of getting help because of the cost, "We have a large population of women in our area who are uninsured."
With that in mind and in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month the Hormone and Wellness Center in Panama City is offering free breast screenings for the entire month. Early detection could save your life.
"The great thing now is that we have made major improvements in the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer. The problem still is we aren't detecting breast cancer early enough,” Bautista says.
There’s also the fact that many women just don’t know how to properly perform self breast exams, something Bautista hopes to change, “When they come in for a screening exam they will have an education session with myself, at that point I will demonstrate to them how to do a breast exam and also have the opportunity to practice on a module that we have for breast cancer so they understand how difficult it is for them to feel anything that is abnormal. In addition I will also do a breast exam on them, if there are things we find that are abnormal we will recommend that they have a diagnostic mammogram.”
It’s recommended women have a yearly mammogram at age 40 and much sooner if there’s a family history of breast cancer.
"The earlier it's detected the sooner we can start treatment and the better the outcome. Unfortunately we still sometimes lose that battle,” Bautista adds, “All you need to do is schedule an appointment.”
Hormone and Wellness Center has partnered with Gulf Imaging MRI to provide women with a diagnostic mammogram at a very reduced price.
Hormone & Wellness Center
752 Harrison Ave.
Mon-Thu. 8am - 4:30pm
Fri. 8am – 12pm