Mention ‘mammogram’ and most people will think of something cold, clinical and even scary. What if we added some hues of hope and changed their perception? After all, a mammogram in time can save lives.
In collaboration with DDB Group Singapore, the MAMMO project reimagines actual scans of breast cancer survivors as art, to shed light on their stories of how mammograms saved their lives. By showcasing these, we hope to not just promote mammogram screenings, but dispel doubts and fears. Because a mammogram isn’t scary; it can save lives.
“I was shocked because no one in my family has got any kind of cancer.”
Anne, a mother of two, was diagnosed with breast cancer when she went for a mammogram scan. Hearing the news, she was distraught as her children were still very young. “God, can you just give me 3 more years?” she thought. Thankfully, Anne is now in her tenth year of remission.
Today, Anne works part-time as an air stewardess and enjoys cycling in her free time. Knowing the importance of early detection, she wants to encourage her friends and women alike to stop procrastinating and go for regular screening. “Whether you have a history of cancer or not, it can happen. Breast cancer does not discriminate.”
“I have to stay strong. I want to see my youngest daughter get married.” These were just some of the thoughts going through Fauzah’s mind when she was diagnosed.
But thanks to an early diagnosis, Fauzah was able to overcome her cancer. “I’m very grateful for my regular check-ups and mammograms as they helped me to detect breast cancer early.”
Looking back on her first mammogram screening, Fauzah shared that she was nervous but felt better when the nurse reassured her while explaining the procedure.
She urges all women aged 40 and above to go for their mammograms. “Just don’t be afraid, it’s quick and it can save your life.”
Jean’s personal experience with breast cancer has taught her this: it’s important to be aware of not just cancer, but the signs to look out for.
Initially, she ignored the mild pain in her breast. It never occurred to her that it could be cancerous as her family did not have any history of cancer. Eventually, Jean was diagnosed during a check-up organised by her company – she’d have otherwise not found out earlier.
Her advice to all: “If you have small pains or any changes in your breast, you should go for your check-ups.”
lntan used to believe that ignorance is bliss. “It’s better not to know things if they don’t bother you. If you are well, it’s better not to scare yourself with a mammogram.”
But after being diagnosed, she realised just how critical it is. The mother of 4 is now an advocate for regular screenings, even going as far as offering to accompany her friends to the screening centres.
“Some of them have lumps but don’t want to do it. I understand that they are afraid. But even if it’s cancerous, if it’s detected early, you can be fine.”
Before Grace was diagnosed, she was already feeling some pain and swelling but kept putting it off. “I noticed changes in my body and my health. In hindsight, those were signs and I didn’t pay attention.”
Thankfully, it was still in stage 2 when she was diagnosed. “If I had delayed it further, it could have spread to other parts of my body.”
“I feel that my story is a lesson for anyone who hesitates on getting a mammogram done.”
Janti was speechless and in tears when the doctor told her about her breast cancer. “I do my mammograms yearly but I skipped a year because of Covid.”
Nevertheless, she’s still thankful that she chose to go for a mammogram that day. “It gave me a clear picture of what I needed to do to save my life.”
Janti now wishes for others to know the importance of regular screenings. “Most people know what a mammogram is but don’t think it’s necessary.”