Knowing Your Family History and Early Detection Promoted at 4th Annual Margaritas & Mammos
(Canon City, Colo.) St. Thomas More Hospital celebrated Breast Cancer Awareness Month under the theme Tree of Life with over 220 women at the 4th Annual Margaritas & Mammos event held on Oct. 19, 2015 at the beautiful Evangelical Free Church. The event highlighted the importance of knowing your family history of breast cancer.
Participants received a special Tree of Life gift as the entered the church, then visited with health experts at education tables. The education was intended for women of all ages, because its never too early to learn about early detection and knowing your risk. Education tables included breast health, knowing your family history, early detection, Womens Wellness Connection (a free breast and cervical cancer screening program), St. Thomas More Physician Group, exercise, nutrition, tobacco cessation, treatment options, support groups and more. Women also had the opportunity to schedule a mammogram at St. Thomas More at the patient registration table.
The St. Thomas More team was excited to partner with the Penrose Cancer Center in Colorado Springs, Dorcy Cancer Center at St. Mary-Corwin in Pueblo, Komen Foundation and EastWest Harmony, along with hospital services represented. The St. Thomas More From the Heart Gift Shop had an impressive display of merchandise including clothing and accessories for women, men, and children, as well as decorative seasonal and holiday items all available for purchase in the gift shop where proceeds benefit hospital projects that make a positive impact on our community.
After a delicious dinner and non-alcoholic margaritas served by St. Thomas More Dining Services, Sheri Trahern, CEO at St. Thomas More, started the program with a touching, personal reflection honoring a friend she lost to breast cancer. Her sentiments led her to ask the women if they have scheduled their mammogram, because life is short, so spend time with the ones you love.
Jillian Maes, Director of Marketing & Communications at St. Thomas More, was the Master of Ceremonies for the event. She also shared a personal reflection about her support for a friend who is currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Breast cancer touches us all, whether personally or in support of a family member or friend. So we are here tonight to celebrate women, to honor breast cancer survivors, and to learn about how early detection saves lives.
Kristy Dryden from the St. Thomas More mammography team presented women with mammography guidelines and highlighted the expertise of their staff. Kristy along with Shari Brown and Dianne Bush have a combined 57 years of experience in mammography. The ultrasound team of Kim Rupp, Kim Symons, Marvene Marcus and Ellen Nelson has a combined 68 years of experience.
The hospitals guest of honor was Lynette Joines, a local breast cancer survivor who received services at St. Thomas More and Penrose Cancer Center. An inspirational video featuring Lynettes breast cancer journey was debuted at the event. It follows her and her clinical caregivers through each stage of her journey from mammography and stereotactic biopsy, to patient navigation, surgery and survivorship! The video is available on the hospital website, stmhospital.org, and Facebook page. Lynette was presented with pink roses by Dianne Bush, Imaging Director and Mammographer at St. Thomas More, for sharing her story with us. Lynettes message to women was to get your annual mammogram. If she would have skipped a year or two, her cancer diagnosis would have been worse.
The nights keynote speaker Kate Crow, M.S., C.G.C., delivered an informative and entertaining presentation. Kate is a genetics counselor at both Penrose Cancer Center and Dorcy Cancer Center. She highlighted the importance of knowing your family history, and provided a risk stratification handout that women could fill in and return to her for a personalized report on their risk of developing breast cancer. She noted that this is important, but that some people who develop cancer have no history of it. So still, the best chance of survival is early detection and following mammography guidelines.
For those involved in making the event a success, it was really special and rewarding to see a room packed full of women wearing pink and taking the initiative to learn about breast health. It takes a tremendous amount of teamwork to pull together all of these health resources for the women in our community, but they sure do deserve a fun night out to learn about how early detection saves lives. Thank you to all who attended in support of the cause.
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