The unveiling of the mammography machine by Governor Lisa Phillips took place this morning, Wednesday, 4 October 2017, in front of Government officials and invited guests at the General Hospital.

The new mammography machine means the Hospital can now offer follow-up mammograms (x-ray of the breast) to those recovering from Breast Cancer, and can offer mammography to those with a clinical need (extensive family history or symptoms) and can also start a Breast Screening Service for women without symptoms who are aged 50-70.

Breast Screening is to detect very early changes in breast tissue (before symptoms appear). Evidence has shown that it is most effective for women between the ages of 50-70. A mammogram is taken every three years for those within this age bracket.

The Breast Screening Service began today and the first patient of the programme said:

“I was very nervous and unsure what to expect as I had been told it is very painful and that your breasts are squeezed to the limit. Having had it done, I can say that the machine is very sensitive and senses when the breast is squeezed enough. It wasn’t painful and I would advise everyone just to go for it.”

The screening programme is different to clinical investigations. If someone has a concern or experience symptoms (pain, discharge, nipple changes, lumps etc.) regardless of age, they need to come and see a doctor as soon as possible, who will refer them for an investigative mammogram if required.

Special thanks go out to the League of Friends and the Cancer Awareness Society, who raised a huge amount of money towards the machine and made the service a possibility.

Five photos are attached to this release.

#StHelena #GeneralHospital #MammographyMachine #BreastScreeningService #CancerAwareness

4 October 2017

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470