Breast cancer awareness is an effort to raise awareness through education on signs and symptoms, and possible ways to curb the situation in terms of breast cancer. It is celebrated in the month of October, with pink ribbon as its symbol. The awareness advocates raise funds and lobby for more knowledge about the disease, better medical care and also a form of patient empowerment.
The breast cancer movement has supported practical, educational, emotional, and financial care for women with breast cancer. Support groups, individual counseling opportunities, and other resources are made available to patients.
Breast cancer occurs when cells divide and grow without their normal control.
The warning signs of breast cancer are not the same for all women.
A change in the look or feel of the breast OR
A change in the look or feel of the nipple OR
Risk factors of breast cancer
1. Ageing : As you grower older, the chances of getting breast cancer is extremely high.
2. Gender : Breast cancer mostly affect high percentage of women other than men. Its 100 times more common in women than in men.
3. Family history: Having a family history of breast cancer, particularly women with a mother, sister or daughter who has or had breast cancer, may double the risk.
4. Obesity: After menopause, fat tissue may contribute to increases in estrogen levels, and high levels of estrogen may increase the risk of breast cancer. Weight gain during adulthood and excess body fat around the waist may also play a role.
5. Not having children: Women who have had no children, or who were pregnant later in life (over age 35) may have a greater chance of developing breast cancer. Breastfeeding may help to lower your breast cancer risks.
6. Menstrual history: Women who start menstruation at an early age (before age 12) and/or menopause at an older age (after age 55) have a slightly higher risk of breast cancer. The increase in risk may be due to a longer lifetime exposure to the hormones estrogen and progesterone.
7. Birth control pills: Using oral contraceptives within the past 10 years may slightly increase the risk of developing breast cancer. The risk decreases over time once the pills are stopped.
8. Heavy drinking: The use of alcohol is linked to an increased risk of developing breast cancer. The risk increases with the amount of alcohol consumed. And many more
Breast cancer screening tests
Breast cancer screening tests include mammography and clinical breast exam. For some women at higher than average risk of breast cancer, breast MRI may also be used.
Clinical breast exam : This can be done by yourself or better still a medical doctor at any health center.
Follow-up after an abnormal finding on a screening test
If screening finds something abnormal, it’s important to get follow-up without delay. That way, if you have breast cancer, it can be treated as soon as possible.
Follow-up after an abnormal finding on a screening test may include a diagnostic mammogram, breast MRI and/or breast ultrasound.
If you feel a lump in your breast, try not to panic or worry. Most lumps are not breast cancer. However, if you find a lump (or notice any change in your breast or underarm area), see a doctor to be sure.
Are you a woman above 18years?
Is your boobs like an orange, pawpaw, lemon, tangerine, watermelon, etc it doesn’t matter dear, just get your breast examined
Avoid putting on tight bra…. After school or work let your boobs breathe. My sister free it
Do not sleep with bra on
Frequently wash the bras as well
Let’s do more vegetables and fruits
Make the breast available for the men to suck and encourage them to suck
Appreciate them when sucking and enjoy it.
Dont forget, early detection saves lives.
By: Amma Adutwumwaa (Medical Student)
Vitebsk State Medical University,Belarus.