Breast cancer centers along the Wasatch Front
At MountainStar Healthcare, we understand that a breast cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming. This is why we offer comprehensive, compassionate breast cancer care to every patient. We do this by providing access to preventive screenings to detect cancer early, advanced diagnostics to determine an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment plans tailored to each individual.
For more information about our breast cancer care or for help finding a doctor, call our free, 24/7 Consult-A-Nurse line at (801) 715-4152.
Breast cancer risk factors
The following factors indicate a higher risk for developing breast cancer:
- Age—The chance of developing breast cancer increases as a woman gets older.
- Breast density—Having dense breasts can increase your likelihood of developing breast cancer.
- Genes—Women who have family members with breast or ovarian cancer may be at a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
- Personal factors—Personal factors that place women at a higher risk of developing breast cancer include beginning a period before 12 years old or going through menopause after 55 years old.
Additional breast cancer risk factors include:
- Being overweight
- Drinking alcohol
- Not having children or having your first child after 35 years old
- Taking birth control pills
- Using hormone replacement therapy (also called menopausal hormone therapy)
Screening for breast cancer
Breast cancer screening is one of the most proactive steps a woman can take in the early detection of breast cancer. Our hospitals offer a variety of screenings to ensure breast health, including:
- Breast ultrasounds
- Breast ultrasound biopsies
- Genetic counseling for high-risk patients
Mammogram screenings use low-dose X-ray imaging technology to examine breast tissue. Our hospitals use mammography to diagnose breast cancer and breast tissue anomalies, such as tumors and other breast diseases.
During a mammogram, an imaging technician will position your breasts on the imaging equipment. To ensure a high-quality picture, the breast must be somewhat compressed. The mammogram compresses the breast for a few seconds while an image is taken. You and the technician are the only ones in the room during the mammogram.
The entire procedure takes about 15 minutes, but the actual breast compression only lasts a few seconds. You may feel some discomfort when your breasts are compressed.
Digital mammograms provide a two-dimensional image of a 3D breast. Overlapping layers of tissue can sometimes create unclear results, resulting in false positives or false negatives of breast cancer.
3D mammograms provide a series of detailed images of the breast, which allow the technician and doctor to better evaluate breast tissue layer by layer. This procedure makes fine details more visible and no longer hidden by overlapping tissue. It may also help detect breast cancer up to 15 months earlier than conventional methods.
Signs and symptoms of breast cancer
Signs and symptoms of breast cancer can include:
- A new lump in the breast or underarm
- Dimpling of the breast
- Nipple discharge other than breast milk, including blood
- Pain in the nipple area
- Redness or irritation in the nipple area
- Thickening or swelling of part of the breast
Breast self-exams and mammograms can help find breast cancer early when it is most treatable.
Treatment for breast cancer
After a diagnosis is provided, our doctors discuss individual care options for the patient, including treatment plans.
The most common treatments for breast cancer include:
Surgery for breast cancer
Should surgery be required to treat breast cancer, the most common type of surgery is a mastectomy—the surgical removal of the breast. Depending on if the cancer has spread, doctors may recommend a single mastectomy (the removal of one breast) or a double mastectomy (the removal of both breasts). There are also options for breast reconstruction surgery to rebuild the look and shape of the breast after a mastectomy.