By Dr. Stohr
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The American Cancer Society estimates one in eight women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in her lifetime. In Connecticut this number is even higher. We have the second highest incidence rate of breast cancer in the nation.
As an interventional radiologist at Radiology Associates of Hartford I am at the frontlines of medicine and diagnostic technology. But it isn’t my job that pushes my support of early screening and awareness. It was my wife.
Samantha was one of the kindest, most compassionate and caring people I have ever known. She was an amazing wife, mother and sister. She lost her battle with breast cancer in October 2010 at only 39 years old.
Samantha fought a tough battle and was a warrior until the end. There is not a day I don’t miss her. But we honor her memory each year at the Komen Connecticut Race for the Cure. Our group, “Team Samantha,” participated last year in Hartford and contributed $8,400 to fund breast cancer research — a cause I am proud to put my wife’s name and legacy behind.
As a single father and male team leader I noticed there weren’t any other men at the Race for the Cure planning meetings besides me. I realized that my taking part in the race wasn’t just about fundraising and honoring Samantha. It was also about helping men affected by this disease feel like they weren’t invisible.
In addition to participating in the Hartford Race for the Cure on Saturday, June 1 at Bushnell Park, my colleagues at Radiology Associates of Hartford will host the second annual Mammothon. It’s 26.2 continuous hours of screening mammograms at our Glastonbury office. And for every person who comes with their race bib RAH will make a donation to the local Komen affiliate.
Last year’s Mammothon helped more than 60 women get their annual exam. Two of the women screened at the 2012 Mammothon were diagnosed with breast cancer. Both are now successfully undergoing treatment for the disease.
Regular mammograms can reduce breast cancer deaths by more than 30 percent, yet nearly one third of eligible women don’t get regular screenings. The great thing about the Mammothon is that with extended hours there is no excuse not to get one. It runs from 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 1 to 4:20 p.m. on Sunday, June 2. More details are on our website: www.rahxray.com.
If the good that comes from my wife’s early passing is to inspire other women to get regular mammograms, then I am happy to help lead the charge.
George M. Stohr, D.O.
Radiology Associates of Hartford, P.C.
Avon, Enfield and Glastonbury
Dr. Stohr is leader of “Team Samantha” — named for his late wife — in the Connecticut Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. He is a board-certified interventional and diagnostic radiologist with Radiology Associates of Hartford, a partnership between the region’s leading radiologists and Saint Francis Hospital. RAH provides comprehensive outpatient diagnostic and interventional radiology services to the Enfield, Glastonbury, and Avon communities. Dr. Stohr is also on staff at Saint Francis Hospital. Call RAH at 860-714-2724 or visit www.rahxray.com for more information. Find RAH on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rahxray and broadcasting at www.youtube.com/user/rahxray.