Barbara Ward

BCA, Greenwich Merchants Partner for ‘GoForPink’ Event

“GoForPink” is a series of events Breast Cancer Alliance (BCA) dedicates to Breast Cancer Awareness Month in collaboration with the Town of Greenwich and many of its merchants. Beginning with special events on Oct. 3, the local community will come together for special days of shopping, dining and education throughout the month of October, raising awareness and critical funds furthering BCA’s mission of eradicating breast cancer. read more...

BCA’S ‘Go For Pink!’ Kicks off Breast Cancer Awareness Month

“Go For Pink” is a series of events Breast Cancer Alliance (BCA) dedicates to Breast Cancer Awareness Month in collaboration with the Town of Greenwich and many of its merchants. The kickoff on Oct. 1 will bring the local community together for special days of shopping, dining and educational forums in the Town of Greenwich throughout the month of October, raising awareness and critical funds furthering BCA’s mission of eradicating breast cancer. read more...

BCA and Greenwich Merchants Partner to Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast Cancer Alliance (BCA) is once again partnering with more than 70 businesses to present GO FOR PINK, a special day of shopping and events dedicated to Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the Town of Greenwich. Scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 6, GO FOR PINK brings the community together to raise awareness and critical funds toward eradicating breast cancer and to further support BCA’s mission: the funding of innovative research, breast surgery fellowships, education, and support for underserved women. A majority of participating merchants will be donating 10% of their day’s sales to BCA and some will be extending their donation throughout October with both in-store and online sales. read more...

More Than Just One Month a Year

1 in 50 women in the United States will develop breast cancer by the age of 50. As Breast Cancer Awareness Month comes to an end, survivors and doctors say that awareness, while important in October, is something to talk about 365 days a year.
“We talk a lot about risk factors but the biggest risk factor for getting breast cancer is simply being female. We are all at risk and therefore we all need to be aware,” said Dr. Barbara Ward.
“We get lost in taking care of our children sometimes. We try to be good parents and make sure they have everything but we can’t be good parents if we aren’t here,
 said breast cancer survivor Brenda Drayton. “We have to take care of ourselves too. Not only for Breast Cancer Awareness Month but all through your life.”
Dr. Barbara Ward, the Medical Director of the Greenwich Hospital Breast Center says it is important for women to take charge of their health.
“The American Cancer Society says if somebody has any risks they should still stick with older guidelines which say start at age 40 for screenings and mammographies. Here in Connecticut we also do a breast ultrasound, particularly in younger patients when they have dense mammograms. Most women are dense between the ages of 40 and 50 so to be completely on top of things, I would say start a mammogram at 40, add an ultrasound to that because you are likely to be dense.”
And there is one this doctors know for sure.
“We know that early detection saves lives. There is no question about that,”said Dr. Ward.
Brenda Drayton was diagnosed with breast cancer less than a year ago.
“I was on my way home and the doctor called and I said, ‘give me 5 minutes to get home’ and I pulled into the parking spot and she called back and she told me my test was positive. I had my moment in the car and I cried and then I said to myself, ‘practice what you preach. You tell your kids all the time ‘you have your moment and then you keep it moving,” said the 53 year old survivor.
“I’m a fighter. When I got the news, there was no way I was just going to lay down and accept it,” said Drayton.
African American women are at greater risk of getting breast cancer and presented with a more advanced stage of the disease when they are diagnosed.
“A young Black woman has a higher chance of developing breast cancer but her risk gets lower the older she gets,” said Dr. Ward. “So an older Black women is actually at a lower chance of developing breast cancer than the average White women. Young black women in particular have to be on top of their own exam and their imaging.”
A New Yorker, Brenda travelled to Greenwich Hospital where she underwent a bilateral mastectomy, reconstructive breast surgery and chemotherapy.
“It has been such a positive journey. Everyone, even if they were having a bad day, you could not tell. Everyone that I came in contact with was just wonderful. I remember the navigating nurse Jane. She said to me “if you have any problem, your problems are my problems.” She said you call me and you let me know and that was just a big relief. During the process there is so much coming at you and it’s a lot, so it was comforting being here,” said Drayton.
“The day I left, they gave me a little guardian angel and it has just been wonderful. It has helped me get through the hard times.”
When asked what she would tell women who have just received the news that they have breast cancer, Brenda said “Don’t be a victim of your circumstance. Be positive and take it one day at a time. It is not a death sentence. With the technology they have today, you can live longer and your attitude has a lot do with that as well. Be positive.”
You can find more information on breast health by visiting www.greenwichhospital.org
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