Go Red: Heart disease is the #1 killer of women in the U.S.; know your risk!


National Wear Red Day, or “Go Red for Women,” is this Friday, Feb. 2, so now is a good time to talk about heart health, specifically as it applies to women. Nationally, heart disease kills more women than all forms of cancer combined, and in Idaho it is the second leading cause of death for women, after cancer. In fact, cardiovascular disease in the U.S. kills approximately one woman every 80 seconds. Continue reading


January is Cervical Health Awareness Month – Regular screening is key!


CervicalAwareness_EarlyDetectionAll women, especially those over the age of 30, are at risk for developing cervical cancer, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say it’s also the easiest gynecologic cancer to prevent, with regular screening. Getting screened regularly for cervical cancer is important because that is the most effective way to find the disease early. It is highly treatable when it is found early enough. Unfortunately, Idaho has the lowest rate for cervical screening in the United States. Continue reading

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

There’s a good chance this disease will affect your life or the life of someone close to you because it is so common. Only skin cancer has higher rates. One in eight women will develop breast cancer in their lifetimes. Nationally, 246,660 women and more than 2,500 men will be diagnosed with the disease this year, and almost 40,500 women and 440 men will die from it. Here in Idaho, more than 1,000 breast cancer cases were diagnosed in 2013 with almost 200 deaths (191 in 2014).

Let’s talk about risk. Is it possible for a person to reduce their risk?

Risk factors for breast cancer include being female, getting older, and becoming a mother later in life. Other factors include a family history of breast cancer, being overweight and not getting enough exercise. Even though you can’t control your genetic risk for the disease, you can take steps to stay healthy and help prevent it. Maintaining a healthy weight, limiting alcoholic drinks, knowing your family history, and getting the recommended regular screenings all help reduce your risk. Continue reading

Women’s Health Check offers breast and cervical cancer screenings for low-income women in Idaho

All Idaho women need access to healthcare, no matter their income. The Idaho Women’s Health Check program can provide that healthcare coverage for cancer screenings and diagnosis for women in the state who are eligible.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer for American women — 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer during their lifetimes. Cervical cancer is not as common, but it is the easiest gynecologic cancer to prevent with regular screenings. Even so, around 13,000 new cases of cervical cancer will be diagnosed this year in the United States, and nearly 4,000 women will die from it. Continue reading

Do you know the signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer? If you’re a woman, you should.

Have you noticed a proliferation of things turning teal this month? Things that shouldn’t be teal, like a bridge, fountains and even the entire Chicago skyline? The teal movement is an effort to raise awareness about ovarian cancer, which is the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths for women in Idaho, and the fifth nationally.

There is no health screening for ovarian cancer.

That’s what makes it even scarier than most. Because there is no screening for it, many women aren’t diagnosed until the later stages of the disease. Ovarian cancer causes more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system. Nearly 22,000 women in the United States are diagnosed with it each year, and 15,000 die from it. That’s why it’s so important for women to pay attention to their bodies and talk to their doctors when something isn’t right, even if it makes them a little uncomfortable. Continue reading