Know the Facts: Women with Disabilities and Breast Cancer CDC encourages all women 50 years of age or older to get a screening mammogram every 2 (two) years. Make an appointment to get a mammogram. If you are between the ages of 40-49, speak with your doctor about breast cancer screening. To learn more about mammograms, visit Screenings.
Breast cancer is a major health concern for all women, including women with disabilities. About 30% of women aged 40 years or older have a disability.1 In the United States in 2008, 76.2% of women aged 40 or older reported having a mammogram in the past two years, while women with a disability have a lower reported mammography rate than women without a disability (72.2% vs. 77.8%).1
Not counting some kinds of skin cancer, breast cancer in the United States is--
- The most common cancer in women, no matter your race or ethnicity.
- The most common cause of death from cancer among Hispanic women.
- The second most common cause of death from cancer among white, black, Asian/Pacific Islander, and American Indian/Alaska Native women.2
- 191,410 women were diagnosed with breast cancer.
- 40,820 women died from breast cancer.
Getting Screened: Tips for Women with Disabilities As a woman living with a disability, you may face a number of challenges that make it difficult to get a quality mammogram and clinical exam. Here are some tips to make it easier.
When scheduling a mammography, ask:
- How should I dress?
- How do I prepare if I use a wheelchair or a scooter?
- Can the machine be adjusted so I can remain seated?
- How long is the appointment and can I have additional time if I need it?
- Sit upright with or without assistance
- Lift and move your arms
- Transfer from your chair/scooter
- Undress/dress without assistance
- Wear a blouse that opens in the front
- Wear a bra that you can easily remove
- Do not wear deodorant or body powder
- Talk to your healthcare provider about any disability-related concerns