It’s kind of ironic that I ended up working in the medical profession, because I am one of the worst patients ever. I have worked in women’s health since I was 21, but I was nearly thirty before I had my first Pap smear. With my last pregnancy, I didn’t get around to making a prenatal visit until I was almost halfway through the pregnancy. And I didn’t get around to making my “6 week” postpartum visit until my baby was five months old. (I am in no way advocating this type of behavior, by the way; I’m just pointing out my own failings).
My procrastination with regards to all things medical is perhaps due some awkward moments that I have had during health checkups. Let’s face it: we are never at our best when we are sitting in those paper gowns, and often one’s expectation of what is going to happen during a medical visit is not exactly what happens.
This video captures the spirit of many awkward visits that I have had over the years.
All joking aside, keeping up with preventive screenings is important, especially as we get older. As you might expect, research shows that people who go years in between medical checkups are much more likely to develop cancer, heart disease, etc. (Which is why I recently read the riot act to my mother when I found out that she had not had a Pap smear in 15 years and had not had a mammogram or breast exam in her life. I didn’t get any dessert after my little lecture, but she did end up going to get a mammogram, so it was worth it…..).
Every Wednesday evening from now until the end of the year, we are having a walk-in breast health clinic. You can come in without an appointment or an order from a physician and have your breast exam and mammogram right then and there. Yours truly will be there every Wednesday evening to do the breast exams, and I would love to see you there!
For more information, check out the hospital website at www.ramchealth.org.