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Sutter Solano Cancer Center Offers Advice, Free Lecture During Breast Cancer Awareness Month

VALLEJO, Calif., Oct. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Early detection of breast cancer can mean the difference between life and death. In addition to offering Solano County's most advanced detection and treatment for breast cancer, Sutter Solano Cancer Center (SSCC) has undertaken a month-long campaign to educate women about the importance of screening and to make them aware of new technologies for early detection.

As part of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a free breast cancer lecture has been scheduled for Tuesday, October 23, 2007, from 6:30 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. at the Vallejo Medical Office Building. Elizabeth Odumakinde, M.D., medical director of Sutter Solano's cancer program, along with certified genetic counselor Maude Blundell, M.S., C.G.C, will discuss the latest in breast cancer detection, prevention and treatment options. Interested individuals should call 707-554-5326 to reserve a space or visit

Dr. Odumakinde says new technology has made breast imaging quicker and easier. "Most breast cancer can now be detected at an earlier stage when it's easier to treat. And the simple fact is that when more women get screened, more lives are saved," says Dr. Odumakinde. "Furthermore, the switch from film-based to digital mammography systems and the addition of computer aided detection software has made detection quicker, and in some cases, more accurate."

Breast cancer prevention, detection, treatment and support services offered at SSCC include clinical breast exams (CBE's), mammography and the Breast Cancer Notebook. Additionally, Sutter Regional Medical Foundation offers Breast MRI -- a promising new technology currently being used for women at high risk -- through it's Low Court, Fairfield location. For more information about Breast MRI, call 707-427-4900.

Odumakinde emphasized that although the technological advances are great, the most important thing women can do is to know the facts about breast cancer and get "checked out" with regular exams by following current breast cancer screening guidelines.

Current breast cancer prevention guidelines recommend that CBE's be performed every one to three years starting at age 20 and at least once a year starting at age 40. Research has shown that CBE's uncover about half of all screen detected breast cancers and may modestly improve early detection. In addition to annual CBE's, women should conduct breast self-exams monthly.

The guidelines recommend that women should have mammograms annually starting at age 40. Annual breast MRI exams (in addition to annual mammograms) are recommended for women determined to be at high risk of getting breast cancer.

For women faced with breast cancer diagnosis, SSMC -- in coordination with other Sutter Health affiliates -- has introduced the Breast Cancer Notebook, a free 14-chapter notebook that outlines the treatment process, illustrates surgeries and exercises, and provides other valuable information.

SSCC is fully accredited by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. SSCC offers patients a multispecialty team approach to best treatment options; access to cancer-related information, education and support, and a cancer registry and data collection system to improve cancer care at the national, state and local level.

About Sutter Solano Medical Center

For more than 100 years, SSMC has been committed to the community by providing emergency care, delivering babies, and serving others in time of need. The medical center has 111 licensed beds and is fully accredited by The Joint Commission, an independent, non-profit with the mission to continuously improve the safety and quality of care provided to the public.

Sutter Solano Cancer Center is fully accredited by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons -- a recognition only one in four cancer centers receive. Comprehensive cancer services include chemotherapy, infusion therapy, laboratory and pathology, pain management and radiation therapy.

SSMC is part of Sutter Health, a not-for-profit network of hospitals, doctors, and nurses who share expertise and resources to advance health care quality.

SOURCE Sutter Solano Medical Center
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