According to the American Cancer Society, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in their lifetime. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women, except for skin cancers. Currently, there are more than 3.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States.

With those kinds of statistics, there is a high probability that someone you know or love, or maybe even yourself, has been or will be impacted by breast cancer. At ExamOne, there are many in our employee family who have experienced this impact first-hand. To help raise awareness, we are sharing some of those stories of their personal journeys and how others have stepped up to help.

A current journey of hope and healing

In February 2021, Lesa Napolitan, Health and Life Sciences Strategic Account Executive, was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her treatments began almost immediately, and she just finished her chemotherapy and radiation in September.  Lesa keeps a positive attitude with the support of her family, friends, and coworkers. When times get tough, this support system has given her strength.

“The outpouring of love and support has been the most overwhelming part of my journey. I‘m grateful for that because I believe having a positive attitude is one of the most important things you can do for yourself,” said Lesa.

Lesa urges others to be educated about breast cancer and treatment options. At 39, an irregular mammogram initiated further screenings. She was given a choice to wait 6 months or get a biopsy immediately. She chose the biopsy which detected her cancer. “I am thankful I chose to have a biopsy instead of waiting 6 months to compare images because my type of breast cancer grows more aggressively.  I have a twin and after my diagnosis, she went for her first mammogram. Thankfully she was clear. My story would probably be very different had I chosen to wait 6 months.”

Quest Diagnostics has an online quiz that you can take to find out your risk for hereditary breast cancer.

Always an advocate, now with more appreciation

Carla Wiseman, Strategic Account Executive, is an active member of our Quest local charity employee group, QuestCAN, and heads our community involvement activities for the Women in Leadership group. She has helped coordinate our American Cancer Society (ACS) Making Strides Against Breast Cancer sponsorships in Kansas City for the past 6 years. Last year, her efforts became even more meaningful when her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer.

“I’ve always enjoyed giving back to ACS, but now I really know the importance of the programs and support ACS provides,” said Carla.

“My mom had a successful experience, and we are so thankful. But I know the fear and anxiety that her diagnosis caused. Thousands get that scary report every day. The more we can do to help make sure more people are screened and treated, the more moms, like mine, get to be here longer with their loved ones.”

You can still support or join Carla and the Quest and ExamOne team for the walk this year on October 23.

Putting “fun” into fundraising

Since March 2020, ExamOne Sales, Account Managers, and Marketing have been working from home. In the past, the majority of the fundraising for our community charities happened onsite at our laboratory in Lenexa, KS. Last year, when it came time to raise money for the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, these teams still found a way to raise money and have fun. A request was made to make online donations and if the goal was met, John Reynolds, Senior Vice President of Health Data Insights division for ExamOne, would have to dress up in an all-pink outfit with a wig, glasses, and feather boa and conduct the weekly video call with these groups. The team rose to the challenge and raised 5 times the initial goal! And John looked fabulous on the call. The creative effort was featured on the Kansas City American Cancer Society social media.

More personal stories to share soon!

The post Breast cancer awareness, experiences, and journeys among our ExamOne colleagues appeared first on ExamOne Blog.

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