The New Orleans Saints kicked off October's National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with a visit to Ochsner's Lieselotte Tansey Breast Center on October 2.
Saints Punter Thomas Morstead and Ambassador Michael Lewis distributed tote bags filled with Saints/Ochsner Breast Cancer Awareness items, along with pink Healincomfort© medical device shirts to women preparing for their mastectomies.
"The shirt is great for patients post-operation," said Morstead, who's mom is a breast cancer survivior. "When my mom went through it, the worst thing wasn't the pain or the surgery, it was having to carry around these bags for a couple of weeks after surgery and she just didn't feel very pretty with those. These shirts are good because they keep those concealed and you can go out and do your normal routine whether you're going to the store, to church or to a Saints game."
Morstead said he felt he could relate to the patients as they prepare for their surgery.
"My mom's a breast cancer survivor so I think I can be empathetic to what they are going through and the support that they need," Morstead said. "Because of my personal experience, I feel like it's something I can help out with. Also, as a member of the Saints organization, most of the ladies have been life-long Saints fans, so, hopefully, it gives me the chance to brighten their day a little."
During the visit, Morstead spent time with the patients and their families and felt their positivity.
"All of the patients were mainly upbeat," he said. "People in New Orleans are resilient and it's just the next hurdle in life that they're going through. They have positive attitude. That's what you need when you're going through something tough like this – your family and a positive outlook. "
The National Football League and NFL Players Association will support National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with their fourth-annual national breast cancer screening initiative and fundraising campaign. In collaboration with the American Cancer Society, the initiative, called "A Crucial Catch: Annual Screening Saves Lives," reminds women 40 and older about the importance of having an annual mammogram.
The Lieselotte Tansey Breast Center at Ochsner was established to provide an interdisciplinary approach to the detection and treatment of breast disease in a serene and beautiful environment. At the Breast Center, surgeons and radiologists that specialize in the evaluation and management of breast disease work together in the same facility to provide women with comprehensive breast services and swift diagnosis.