Breast Cancer Awareness: One Woman's Story 10-07-2010 - WNEM TV 5

Breast Cancer Awareness: One Woman's Story 10-07-2010

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and local hospitals are helping patients fight their way through the disease.
TV5's Catherine Bodak caught up with a woman who has battled cancer twice, and now she's telling her story.
Esther Mattox is a cancer survivor who has had two bouts with the deadly disease. When she was diagnosed the second time, she wasn't sure how she was going to get through another round of cancer.
"I have so many blessings, so I can't help but smile and I hope when I smile and laugh -- when I enjoy life -- [it will] really help [me] to heal," said Mattox.
A new program at Hurley Medical Center is now providing a more hands-on approach to the diagnosis and recovery from this deadly disease.
"[We] help women early on when they get their diagnosis," said Marsha Schmit, a registered nurse and Hurley's only breast heath navigator. "[We] sit down and understand what it means, what treatment will be indicated and to help them make good choices."
Hurley's Breast Health Nurse Navigator program is the only one of its kind in Genesee County, and it provides information and support to breast cancer patients and survivors.
"I follow them along their journey and to make sure they don't have obstacles along the way," said Schmit. "I help getting rides, wigs and access to lymphoma specialists helping them make good choices."
With October being Breast Cancer Awareness month, Hurley is offering extended hours for mammograms to accommodate for busy schedules.
"The reason why they extended the hours is to make it easy for women, especially working women, to give them the opportunity to come out and get their mammograms," said Schmit.
Anyone wanting to support Hurley's Breast Health Nurse Navigator program can do so at a special fundraiser Thursday evening at Bubba O'Malley's in Burton from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
In the end, as people like Mattox battle this disease, it's programs like the one at Hurley that help them every step of the way.
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