Local Breast Cancer Survivor Hopes to Raise Awareness to Early Detection and Routine Screenings
In February of 2020 at Age 36, Sarah Johnson was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. She is a cancer survivor who now works as Executive Director for Linked By Pink to raise awareness to the importance of breast cancer screenings.
Her breast cancer was detected early at a checkup, done only because the gene runs in her family. Her grandmother had breast cancer so Sarah was more likely to get diagnosed at a young age. Doctors didn't detect anything on a mammogram but found the breast cancer through an MRI.
“We were just doing routine testing because I had the gene, so that’s how we found it, so I did the chemo and then did the double myectomy and total hysterectomy,” Johnson said
In August, after 16 rounds of chemotherapy, she celebrated being one year cancer free. However, she said early detection is what helped save her life, so she stresses the importance of routine checkups and mammograms, something many people put off especially during the pandemic
“Don’t put it off and don’t say ‘oh well maybe next month,’ I was thankful that mine was never canceled,” Johnson said.
She said there are also ways to detect breast cancer at home, and getting comfortable with your body is key.
“If you notice any lumps, any nipple discharge, any thickening of your skin or just anything that’s not normal,” Johnson said. “We know our bodies best.”
Linked By Pink has a number of community groups helping them raise money, especially this month, so they can help their members with hospital bills and grants while they are undergoing treatment.
If you want to help you can head on over to their Facebook Page.