Two years ago there was a conversation with a 40-something year old Saudi female. She was asked if she had ever had a mammogram. Her response was that she had never heard of one and had no idea what one was or for.
Thankfully since then there has been much in the area of educational awareness and pro-activeness on the part of Saudi society to educate women and families about breast cancer.
Routine pap smears and mammograms are common. Women are taught how to perform self breast exams by either physicians or nurses. Ultrasounds are requested as a follow-up to pap smears and mammograms when there are queries or any kind of an abnormality.
If any woman in the Kingdom encounters an ob/gyn physician who seems hesitant or reluctant to perform a pap smear or explain how a woman should do a self breast exam, get a new physician immediately!
Zahra Breast Cancer Association facilitates services for women. In addition, Kingdom Hospital and National Guard Health Affairs are among other facilities which provide exemplary service for both Saudi nationals and expatriates.
If you are a woman and over 30 years of age, do yourself a favor and get a mammogram. Many physicians now recommend women of 25 years of age to get a mammogram and particularly if there is a history of breast cancer in the family. Mammograms can and do save lives.
(image from mscoupinista.com)