Early breast cancer detection needed in MS - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Early breast cancer detection needed in MS

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

"I had six weeks of radiation. I came out of that fine. Everything's been going good." Judy Gillespie is counting her blessing, and those around her who've made her a breast cancer survivor.

"Anybody that feels like something's wrong with them, go to the doctor. They got good doctors. They're real friendly. They're there to help you. They helped me," Gillespie said.

The Department of Radiation Oncology at the Jackson Medical Mall opened its doors to the public, primarily to raise awareness of early detection. UMMC radiation oncologist Dr. Srinivasan Vijayakumar says there's a lot of room for improvement. "Many advanced cases are diagnosed more in Mississippi, so we really want to focus on educating people about the importance of early diagnosis and screening."

Fortunately, Judy is among the ones diagnosed in the early stages of breast cancer. And she's a beneficiary of more specialized treatments. For instance, customized molds that facilitate precision, computer guided radiation without damaging healthy surrounding tissue.

Judy can't stress enough the technology is there. She says it's your job to take advantage of it. "If you sit there and don't want to go because y'all scared of a little pinch and that it's going to hurt, you ain' t doing nothing to help. You not doing anything but killing yourself," Gillespie said.

"It's not saying you can't live a normal life because you have cancer, because you can. You just go to fight the fight. Don't give up."

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DR. SRINIVASAN VIJAYAKUMAR | UMMC RADIATION ONCOLOGIST

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