Can I Protect Myself From Breast Cancer? (with Liz O’Riordan, MD)

Your Doctor Friends

Can I Protect Myself From Breast Cancer? (with Liz O’Riordan, MD)

April 16, 2024

Can I Protect Myself From Breast Cancer? (with Liz O’Riordan, MD)

What happens when you turn 40 (and you also have boobs)?

Well, since May 2023, the USPSTF has recommended that women at average risk for breast cancer start screening with mammograms beginning at age 40, and undergo mammography every other year. 

These updated recommendations are still “in progress” and the USPSTF cites the urgent need for more research on: 

  • breast cancer screening for people with dense breasts (nearly half of all women), 
  • how to particularly protect women of color
  • In the US, there exists a long history of health disparities across screening and treatment for breast cancer. 
  • The Task Force discusses, for example, that Black women are 40% more likely to die than White women, and too often get aggressive cancers at young ages. 

So, Your Doctor Friends are taking a page from America’s Sweetheart (and breast cancer survivor herself) Katie Couric. You may remember Katie both underwent a colonoscopy AND a mammogram on the Today Show, and YDF Julie wants to do the next best thing- consult with a breast cancer expert before she gets her FIRST EVER MAMMOGRAM!

Your Doctor Friends have the absolute honor to present our guest today, a consummate badass, breast cancer survivor and breast surgeon, to walk Julie through her own personal risk assessment and screening process for breast cancer. 

Finally, we want to take some time at the end of this episode to share the story of a dear friend and colleague, a fellow sports medicine doctor, and absolute amazing human being, who very recently lost her life to breast cancer. She is the inspiration for this episode and Your Doctor Friends think it’s important to talk about her, and are so grateful to her family for their consent to share her story. 

Learn more about Dr. Kristin Abbott here.

Alright, let’s get on with it, can we answer the question:

Can I protect myself from breast cancer?

ENTER Dr. Liz O’Riordan to help us find out!

Dr O’Riordan is an expert breast surgeon who has had breast cancer three times. She’s a best-selling author, speaker, broadcaster and podcaster and is a trusted source of reliable information. 

She shares helpful, approachable, valid breast cancer information online, we found her via her IG account @oriordanliz, she also has a podcast called “So Now I’ve Got Breast Cancer”, and she’s published tons of helpful work, including her book “The Complete Guide to Breast Cancer” and her memoir “Under the Knife”. She also has her own wikipedia page, which is pretty rad 🙂

Resources for today’s episode include:

Dr. O’Riordan’s website.

Link to the Tyrer-Cuzick Risk Assessment Calculator for breast cancer.

The USPSTF’s “In Progress” updated guidelines for breast cancer screening.

The Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s info page on updated USPSTF Breast Cancer Screening Guidelines.

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