Breast cancer is perhaps the most widely discussed cancer in America. It has its own symbols, races, and a even a whole month, October, dedicated to its awareness. Yet, even with all of the attention, it's easy to forget just how devastating the disease can be at a local level.

"In Montana, some of the most recent information that we have tells us that over 700 Montana women, each year, are diagnosed with breast cancer, and each year, about 125 Montana women die from breast cancer," said Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services Cancer Control Program Manager Leah Merchant.

The most recent numbers have a silver lining, but they do indicate that Montana is a little behind the rest of the nation when it comes to the number of women who receive proper screening.

"The rate of breast cancer in Montana as well as for the United States has been slowly decreasing," Merchant said. "In 2010, the percent of women in Montana who reported having a mammogram in the past two years in Montana was 71 percent and across the United States that was at 78 percent."

There's still a lot we don't know about fighting breast cancer, but for starters, Montana DPHHS recommends women not to smoke, to restrict alcohol use, and to get mammograms on a regular basis.

Leah Merchant