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Missing a mammogram can be costly

Dianne Wagner is standing strong despite a breast cancer diagnosis and her own procrastination for screening at St. Luke's Hospital. (Photo credit: WLOS Staff)

Dianne Wagner is standing strong despite a breast cancer diagnosis and her own procrastination for screening at St. Luke's Hospital.

"We had a change in insurance and we became self-pay, and I was a little more hesitant about taking that on," Wagner said. "I have to be honest with that."

"She missed a couple of mammograms, and there it was," explained Sonja Lucas, RT, of St. Luke's.

"I was doing my routine self exam in the shower, and I felt something that I hadn't felt before," Wagner added.

It turned out to be Stage-3 breast cancer that resulted in a double mastectomy and continuing chemotherapy.

"We don't know who's going to have breast cancer," Lucas said. "It could be your mother, your sister, your best friend, your wife."

"I know now I have faced breast cancer," Wagner reflected. "I didn't have a history of it. I never dreamed I'd be one of the ladies facing this."

She is just thankful to call herself a survivor, and urges other women to never skip a mammogram, because early detection is the key to less-invasive treatments with better outcomes.

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