Everything we do here is the same thing that’s being done at other medical centers nationwide – only with a more personal touch.
We are accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC), which is a subsidiary of the American College of Surgeons, and our Breast Imaging Center was designated a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology. Those are huge accolades.
Survivor Felecia Prowell originally went to a facility in Nashville for her initial diagnosis.
“I didn’t like it, so I came back to Williamson Medical Center,” she said. “The diagnosis was the same, but the care was different. I am now five-years cancer free and I am thankful to be here and thankful to Williamson Medical Center for being here.”
Because we are always looking to expand our offerings and improve the experience our patients have while they are here, we have grown Williamson’s Breast Health Center and have moved into a beautiful new space at 4601 Carothers Parkway, just down the street from the medical center building.
This expansion combines all of our breast health services, from consultations to biopsies to imaging into one convenient location. We have added some new technology, such as stereotactic biopsies and digital tomosynthesis, which creates a 3-D image of the breast using X-Rays and can produce clearer, more accurate images when used in conjunction with mammography. This type of technology can help us detect cancers of the breast earlier in some cases.
“We have the technology and the skilled staff just like the bigger facilities, but we are able to offer very personalized service,” said Certified Breast Health Navigator, Cary Ralph, R.N. “We know you and your family when you come here. We get very involved not only in your medical treatment, but we will be certain that you understand everything that is happening with your treatment.”
Ralph, is on-site and available anytime patients need her. She’s like having your own personal patient advocate. You never have to wonder who to call to ask a question. Patients know exactly who they can call and that’s a great asset when you are dealing with something like breast cancer.
“When a patient hears cancer, they really can’t hear anything else,” Ralph says. “It’s scary and you go into shut-down mode. There are so many things a patient needs to know about breast cancer. They can call me at any time and ask me more questions. I talk to them about treatments and what to expect. If they are worried about something, they can call me and I will run down the answer for them so there is no added stress to an already stressful situation.”
Williamson County is home to the best restaurants, the best mall and schools and medical center. Our centrally located Breast Health Center will make it even easier for women to feel they are getting the best treatment they can get locally rather than having to drive downtown.
Survivor Darlene Abbott said throughout her treatment, she never felt like a number or a chart.
“The doctor asked us about our family,” she said. “He wanted to know about me. From the beginning, I felt like they were walking arm-in-arm with us on this journey. I felt like I was getting the best care there was. Now, as far as we know, I am completely cancer-free.”
Breast cancer, when caught and treated early is a very treatable disease and we want women to know that. It doesn’t have to be a death sentence. Our list of survivors, who are a living testament to this, is growing everyday.
The fact is now there are a lot more options with surgery and medical treatment. There is more testing now that can tell us what the risk is for relatives and more of it is covered by insurance than in years’ past. Depending on the stage of cancer, in many cases we are able to put a woman’s mind at ease and educate them that breast cancer can be treatable and manageable.
We always encourage any woman who has a history of breast cancer to start mammogram screening at 35 instead of 40 and be very diligent about self-breast exams. Oftentimes lesions are found by feeling them before they would be detected by digital screening.
And last but not least, pay attention to diet, exercise and estrogen intake. All of these things can be risk factors. It’s so important to eat right and exercise. Obesity is not only a risk factor for a number of other reasons, but obesity also causes your body to hold on to estrogen longer, which is a further risk factor.