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Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans’ Hospital

 

My experience with a mammogram

Photo; Kendra Cage, Army Veteran standing in front of a tree

Kendra overcame her fears of getting a mammogram, and so can you.

By the Women Veteran Advisory Committee and Health Promotion Disease Prevention Program.
Friday, October 26, 2018

Kendra Cage is a United States Army Veteran. She served in the U.S. Army Veterinary Command as an Animal Care Specialist and training sergeant. She treated wounded and sick animals, to include pets, strays, police dogs, exotics and horses. She cared for those who needed her help, fought for those who couldn’t fight for themselves and taught other soldiers to fight alongside her.

“In the Army, we were a team,” Kendra said. “Someone always had your ‘SIX’ – meaning someone had your back.”

When Kendra deployed to Korea, she was the only female in her platoon. There, she quickly learned to fight for respect, fight to be heard, fight for the opportunity to be promoted and eventually learned to fight for equal treatment for others.

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month – a time to remember the fight against breast cancer through early detection. 

Kendra remembers listening to older women talk about their mammogram appointments as if they were the most painful experiences they’d ever had.

“So, when it was my turn, I was understandably nervous,” Kendra said. “But not so much that I wasn’t going to give it a try.” 

Kendra’s VA physician submitted a referral for a mammography appointment. The screening was scheduled at her convenience, and a reminder was sent so she wouldn’t forget.

“Getting your mammogram screening is important because early detection means a better chance for treatment and survival if you are diagnosed with breast cancer,” Kendra said.  

“All women face the possibility of breast cancer, and it’s a medical situation that shouldn’t be ignored,” Kendra said. “It’s something we must fight against together. You are not alone. You have an army of women behind you – pulling for you, and cheering you on for survival. It is a fight that is never won by yourself. It takes a team of doctors, nurses and logistical support to ensure you receive the care you deserve. I am thankful that Truman VA is part of my team. I recommend annual mammography screenings because every woman should remember that she’s worth it!”

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