Amy Robach on Good Morning America with GMA host and cancer-survivor Robin Roberts. Photo by Lou Rocco/ABC via Getty Images
On Oct. 1, ABC reporter Amy Robach had her first mammogram during a live broadcast seen by millions of people. Good Morning America producers had approached Robach about doing the test as part of a segment to kick off Breast Cancer Awareness month called GMA Goes Pink. Four weeks later she received a follow-up call from physicians and found out she had breast cancer. "The doctors told my bluntly:’That mammogram saved your life,’" she wrote in a blog post on the ABC News website. Robach, who is 40 years old, has since undergone a bilateral mastectomy.
“I was also told this, for every person who has cancer, at least 15 lives are saved because people around them become vigilant. They go to their doctors, they get checked," she blogged. "I can only hope my story will do the same and inspire every woman who hears it to get a mammogram, to take a self-exam.”
Breast Cancer Awareness month may be over, but that doesn’t mean we stop being aware. My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was 17, and while I’m still several years away from regular mammograms (check with your doctor to find out when you should start screening), there are things I can do now to reduce my future risk, namely, eat well, exercise regularly and maintain a healthy weight. But while prevention strategies are great, they aren’t foolproof and regular checkups will become an important part of my healthcare plan’as they should for every woman.
What are you doing to reduce your breast cancer risk?