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Kristy Jones

Early Detection Saves Lives

For Kristy Jones, the St. Elizabeth Mobile Mammography Unit was the beginning of her breast cancer journey.

Kristy, the health and physical education teacher at Southgate Independent School District in Southgate, Kentucky, had first utilized the Mobile Mammography service in 2015 when it came to the school.

She skipped a year and happened to mention bringing the unit back to the school nurse, who was able to schedule the van at Southgate before the end of the school year. Parents, faculty and community members were all invited to schedule appointments with the Mobile Mammography Unit.

“I ended up not even having an appointment,” says Kristy with a laugh. “It was fate that got me out into that van! And it’s so nice inside – it’s private and so clean, just like a little office. The staff is experienced – it’s exactly like getting a mammogram at a hospital.”

A week later, Kristy was told her mammogram showed some calcifications in her breast. She was scheduled for diagnostic imaging at St. Elizabeth Healthcare that same day. During the diagnostic imaging, the radiologist told Kristy that they would take a biopsy to make sure everything was clear.

A few days later, Kristy got the call to come back in – the biopsy showed abnormal cells. She had breast cancer.

“I was scared to death,” says Kristy. “The nurses were wonderful. They got out books, showed me pictures, calmed me down. They were incredible.”

A week later, Kristy and her husband were nervously waiting for Dr. Patricia Abello, Kristy’s surgeon, to give them her prognosis.

“I’ll never forget the first thing she said to me,” says Kristy. “She looked right at us and said, ‘Let me start with what you don’t have. You do not have a life-threatening disease.’ From that point on I was just so relieved.”

Dr. Abello explained that Kristy’s early mammogram had discovered Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS), the most common type of non-invasive breast cancer. Dr. Abello and Kristy’s radiation oncologist, Dr. Lauren Castellini, worked together to create a customized treatment plan for Kristy, which included surgery and radiation.

“I haven’t been surprised by anything because they prepared me for everything,” Kristy says. “From day one – every single person at St. Elizabeth has gone above and beyond for me. Dr. Abello and Dr. Castellini took the time to explain every single step of the surgery, everything I’d go through during my recovery, any possible side effect I could have from the radiation. It has helped so much to know what to expect.”

Kristy recently finished her last round of radiation and is doing great. She’ll go back for a follow-up mammogram in six months and then she’ll be back to a yearly mammogram schedule. She credits the St. Elizabeth Mobile Mammography Unit with catching her breast cancer early.

“I’ve told anyone who will listen – early detection could have saved my life,” Kristy says. “We found my breast cancer early. If I hadn’t gone into the van that day for my mammogram, who knows how things could have turned out?”

The St. Elizabeth Mobile Mammography Unit can be scheduled anywhere in the community – schools, office buildings, libraries. If you are interested in scheduling the Mobile Mammography Unit at your location, please call (859) 301-2031. You can also view the online Mobile Mammography schedule to see when the van will be close to your home or work.

St. Elizabeth Mobile Mammography Unit

For more information about the St. Elizabeth Mobile Mammography Unit please click here or call (859) 301-2031.