Yesterday, CJ Saufley gave her State of the Judiciary report to the Legislature: A Report to the Joint Convention of the Second Regular Session 128th Maine Legislature. In it she discussed, among other things, courthouse infrastructure, digitization of records and a Drug Court to deal with the opioid crisis. But let’s talk about the most important part of her speech – when she exhorted every woman over 40 to get an annual mammogram.
Noting her own experience (they caught it early, so she got to avoid the wonderful world of chemo), she said.
“I want to encourage every woman over 40 to get your annual mammogram done. If you haven’t already done so, schedule it today.
The insurance for Maine State employees completely covers the cost, and for those who do not have that coverage, there are many programs that will help or substantially defray those costs.
Schedule it now. Your family will thank you, and you will be able to continue to be an important part of this wonderful world.
Get your mammograms done—really, I mean it.
Don’t make me enter an Order. Just do it.”
Amen. Every time I see some idiotic article about how women should wait until 50, or they don’t need to have one every year, there are so many false positives, blah blah blah, I want to smack whoever’s writing this drivel over the head with the newspaper. Sometimes they show an upside down pyramid with a bunch of xs, with only one x at the bottom, to depict how few cancers are found via that annual mammogram for people under 50 – just one little x.
Well, I’M THAT X. Last week I went to my oncologist for my tenth annual check-up (you mate with your oncologist for life, like swans). When I was 48, my mammogram was clear. When I was 49, my mammogram showed a lump over two centimeters (that’s pretty big), requiring surgery, radiation, chemo, the whole nine yards. It is crystal clear that if I hadn’t been getting mammograms every year, I’d be dead now, not chatting with Dr. Winer every year about the next Pan-Mass challenge.
So if you want to stick around, too, tell the doctors and insurers and anyone else who says you don’t need this to go jump in a lake. As CJ Saufley noted, the state of the art now is 3-D, and that’s what you want, too. You also want the radiologist who’s looking at your charts to see all your past ones, looking for changes.
I looked back at a blog I wrote from 2009 that seems to hit the nail on the head: Tough Appellate Cancer Babes.
Following up on that blog, note that Justices Ginsburg and O’Connor are still here, alive and kicking. So is CJ Saufley. So am I. You want to be, too.