October is breast cancer awareness month, an annual campaign to educate people about breast cancer. Breast cancer is the most prevalent form of cancer. This disease has become a major problem all across the world including India.
Breast cancer is characterized by uncontrolled growth of cells, which results in formation of lumps within the breast. It is one of the treatable forms of cancers. If not detected early, it can be a life threatening disease as it can also spread to other parts of the body.
Breast cancer affects women both in the developed and the developing world. It can occur at any age but, it is most common in women above the age of 40 years. In India, Breast Cancer accounts for 25% to 31% of all cancers in women. The average age of developing breast cancer has also undergone a significant shift from 50 - 70 years to 30 - 50 years.
Watch out for the signs:
For Breast self examination, please follow the link
NEED OF THE HOUR is awareness about breast examination, beginning from 20 years of age, and regular screening from a qualified doctor, so that it can be detected early and treated successfully.
"Early detection is the key to prevention."
Busting the breast cancer myths
Only a small percentage of lumps in the breast are cancerous. But if there is a persistent lump in the breast or any change in the breast tissue, always consult a doctor for a clinical breast exam.
Only around 10% of individuals having breast cancer have a family history of this disease. Most women who are diagnosed with cancer have no family history.
Breast cancer neither can be caught from someone nor can be transferred to someone. It is a non communicable disease which results from uncontrolled cell growth of the breast tissue.
A mammogram or X-ray of breast helps in early detection of breast cancer. It requires a very small dose of radiation. The risk of harm from this radiation is extremely low.