WESTMINSTER, Md. (WJZ) — Breast Cancer Awareness Month may be over, but the fight is not.

LifeBridge Health is preparing to host its fourth-annual Mammothon November 7, reminding women to get a mammogram to test for breast cancer.

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It’s especially personal for one area woman who counseled others through diagnoses and surgeries for decades and now finds herself on the other side of the hospital bed.

For 29 years, Trish Wagman has started her day at Carroll Hospital in Westminster, supporting patients through everything from diabetes to breast cancer.

As a registered nurse and patient educator, her bedside manner and knowledge are first-class, arming women with the resources needed to survive.

“I think it’s very rewarding,” she said. “It’s a good thing, it’s good to feel like you’re bringing them something on the day of surgery and letting them know that there’s support out there.”

One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. For Wagman, it began on Christmas Eve with a call from her doctor wanting a second mammogram and ultrasound.

Wagman opted for a 3D mammogram for a deeper picture and more information.

Days into the new year, she learned she had breast cancer.

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“You take it in and knowledge is power, so I had more information to move forward,” she said.

Support like she’s given her patients for years now sustains her through her own recovery.

“That was the hardest part I think was telling other people because then it makes the cancer real,” she said.

Wagman also runs the hospital’s breast cancer support group. No matter what she’s fighting, she always shows up.

“It changes you as a person,” she said. “I feel like I’m more supportive, I understand since I had to have a lot of the tests.

After seeing the process first-hand, Wagman knows events like the Mammothon can save lives.

“Getting a mammogram is really good information and really it gives you power for your health, it gives you information, it gives you a voice to take care of yourself,” she said.

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