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Focused on Health

Learn how to consume a well-balanced diet, fit exercise into your daily routine, protect yourself from the sun, avoid or quit tobacco, and get appropriate cancer screening exams to reduce your risks for cancer.

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In the October issue of Focused on Health:

Genetic Testing for Breast Cancer: Who Should Get Tested?

Joanne Beethe, 50, has two daughters and seven grandchildren ranging in age from two months to 10 years. She is extremely close to her family. Joanne, who everyone calls Joan, is an accountant, a self-starter and a breast cancer survivor.

After her diagnosis, Joan discovered that her cancer was most likely inherited. She was diagnosed with Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer (HBOC) syndrome, which is a result of a mutation of the BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 genes.

"Knowing earlier that I had HBOC would’ve helped me," said Joan. "I would have gotten more frequent mammograms, and I feel that my cancer could’ve been caught before it spread to my lymph nodes." Read more

Get the Facts: Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women excluding skin cancer.

More than 182,000 new breast cancer cases in women are expected to occur in the United States this year, and about 2,000 new breast cancer cases are expected to occur in men in 2008 (American Cancer Society).

An individual’s best chance for surviving breast cancer is early detection. When found early, the survival rate is 96% (American Cancer Society). Read more

False Positive MRI Results Not a Positive Experience

When Ho Chen Carius, R.N., made her annual appointment for a mammogram last January, she wasn’t expecting that the results would be anything but normal. That’s why she was surprised when the test picked up on what appeared to be an abnormal spot in her left breast.

"Although I don’t have a history of breast cancer in my family, I was concerned," Ho Chen said. "As a nurse, I understand the importance of taking advantage of screening exams that can keep you healthy and potentially find disease in early stages." Read more