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Seven Secrets About Breast Cancer

Seven Secrets About Breast Cancer

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Published by shared4u2
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Published by: shared4u2 on Jan 28, 2012
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10/09/2012

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 ==== ====FREE CANCER INFORMATIONhttp://www.cancerinfosearch.org ==== ====Secret #1 The Money Spent On Research Into Breast Cancer Is Not Ensuring That Less WomenGet Breast Cancer.Secret #2 You Do Need To Act Against Getting Breast Cancer Before You Reach 50 And YouCannot Rely On Mammograms.Secret #3 You Are At Risk Of Getting Breast Cancer Even If You Don't Have It In Your Family.Secret #4 Most Of The Money Spent On Research Is Not Going Into Prevention To Ensure ThatLess Women Suffer The Devastating Effects Of Breast Cancer In The Future.Secret #5 Most Women Are Not Breast Aware And Are Afraid Of Breast Cancer.Secret #6 Women Are Not Given Lots Of Advice On How They Can Protect Their Breasts AgainstBreast Cancer.Secret #7 Most Women Do Not Appreciate How Important Their Breasts Are And Do Not DoEverything They Can To Look After And Protect Them. The above "secrets" are things which are not commonly known by most women and may besurprising to you. In this article, I intend to shed light on these facts and allow women to make uptheir own minds how they approach their breast health. SECRET #1 THE MONEY SPENT ON RESEARCH INTO BREAST CANCER IS NOT ENSURINGTHAT LESS WOMEN GET BREAST CANCER. The Pink Ribbon and Breast Cancer Awarenss Month was introduced in the US in 1985 andintroduced to the UK in 1993. The Pink Ribbon Foundation is fronted by the Estee Lauder group ofcompanies (known for cosmetics and skincare). Since then the pink ribbon symbol has become synonymous with breast cancer and during thepast 15 years billions of pounds have been raised in its name. Every October the world celebratesBreast Cancer Awareness Month and fund raising during that month is phenomenal. All the breastcancer charities vie with each other to see who can come up with the most innovative "pink"fundraising. They run pink parties and sell pink products in order to raise money. Many companiestake part and do special promotions during October for their preferred charity. "Pink" is bigbusiness. So with all this money being raised during October and also at other times during the year throughevents like charity runs and walks, is there an impact on the breast cancer rates in the UK andaround the world? Are they coming down? Are fewer women suffering from the devastating effectsof breast cancer? Unfortunately, the answer is 'no'. 
 
In the UK, from 1993-2004, breast cancer incidence has increased 18.5%, that is 1% per year. 1 in9 women will get the disease during their lifetime with current projections of 1 in 7 by 2010. 45,500women were diagnosed in 2005, which equates to 125 women every day. Worldwide more than amillion women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. It is also projected that breast cancerrates will rise most in developing countries, where women do not have access to top quality careand where they can also be treated as outcasts in certain societies. Breast cancer survival rates have improved. Every year more than 12,300 women and 70 men diefrom breast cancer. Since the peak in the late 1980s breast cancer death rates have fallen by athird. Breast cancer drugs have helped to save women's lives but, as with any drugs, can havelong-term side affects. Also the cost of these drugs puts great strain on the NHS. If breast cancerrates continue to increase as they have been doing, then, according to Professor Karol Sikora asreported in the Daily Mail on 09/09/08, "the next generation of drugs would keep patients alivelonger, but could swallow half of the current NHS cancer budget within four years. (this refers to allcancer drugs at a cost of £50 billion). With the billions being raised by people around the world in the name of breast cancer, is it rightthat actually more women are getting this devastating disease every year? SECRET #2 YOU DO NEED TO ACT AGAINST GETTING BREAST CANCER BEFORE YOUREACH 50 AND YOU CANNOT RELY ON MAMMOGRAMS. Women in the UK are offered breast screening by mammogram every three years from the age of50. This is because breast cancer is still more common in women over 50 but also because thebreast tissue of younger women is denser and, therefore, makes it more difficult for amammogram to pick up on a potential breast lump. However, this could be giving the message to younger women that they don't need to check theirbreasts themselves. Based on my experience during my breast health talks, very few youngerwomen check their breasts. The main reasons for this are that no-one has shown them how to,they don't know what to do, they think that they only need to worry if breast cancer is in the family(see Secret #3) or they are afraid that they might find something. For a younger woman it is even more important to check her breasts from her mid-twenties asbreast cancer in younger women is usually much more aggressive as the breast cancer cells canmultiply more rapidly than in older women. If girls were taught by their mothers to check theirbreasts from their mid-twenties, they would not be afraid - it would just be part of their generalregime of looking after themselves. Also they would feel confident about what to do. Breast self-examination is easy to do once you have been shown how and there are even devices on themarket which can help you do so with confidence and greater accuracy. Breast cancer is the biggest killer of women aged 35-54, which means it makes sense for womenin this age bracket to do everything they can to protect their breasts. Furthermore, I do not believe that we should rely on mammograms either. Women are onlyscreened every three years and, usually, a mammogram can only detect a breast tumour once ithas been growing for 8 years. By the time the tumour reaches 10 years, it could be too late. Theother thing to remember is that a mammogram can only screen the part of the breast which can be
 
put into the "clamp". It cannot screen under the armpit or between the breasts for example. Lastly, there is growing concern over the safety of mammograms. The following are extracts froman article written by Peter Leando PhD. "Controversy has raged for years as to whether the risks related to the radiation exposure sufferedfrom mammography are justified by the benefits gained ...... new evidence relating to the particulartype of radiation used and the hard evidence relating to the clinical benefits of mammographyhave caused a serious re-evaluation of the justification of mammography as a screening test. Radiation from routine mammography cannot be directly compared to other types of X-ray likechest X-ray etc because they are very different types of radiation. The comparisons that have been used between a chest x-ray and mammography, 1/1,000 of a rad(radiation-absorbed dose) for a chest X-ray and the 1 rad exposure for the routine four films takenof both breasts for a mammographic screening exam results in some 1,000 times greaterexposure. (This refers to the US, where they do four-way screening. In the UK typically only two-way screening is offered.) This is considered a significant risk factor when extended over a ten year screening period and apotential accumulative dose of 10 rads. Unfortunately this is not the major risk posed by theparticular type of radiation used by mammograms, mammography X-rays use a low energy form ofionising radiation that causes greater biologic damage than the high energy X-ray. The very lowenergy electrons affect the density of ionisation tracks that pass through the tissue, which cancause complex damage to the DNA and carcinogenic changes. The radiation used by mammography is almost 5 times more effective at causing cancer." So,women do need to start checking their breasts from their early twenties and we cannot rely onmammograms 100%, particularly for younger women who would have a greater exposure toradiation during their lifetime if they were offered mammograms from a younger age. Alsomammograms do not detect Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC) which is a much rarer form of thedisease and does not involve a lump. This would only detected by a woman looking for changes toher breasts and reporting them to her doctor. SECRET #3 YOU ARE AT RISK OF GETTING BREAST CANCER EVEN IF YOU DON'T HAVEIT IN YOUR FAMILY. Amongst the hundreds of women I have talked to about breast health, the vast majority wereunder the false impression that breast cancer is primarily hereditary. They were surprised to hearthat fewer than 10% of cases occur to women who have breast cancer in the family. In fact, every woman is at risk and should take control of her own breast health to give herself thebest possible chance of prevention or early detection. The other most common acknowledged risk factors are: Age - breast cancer is more common in women over 50Early puberty - it is worrying that puberty is starting younger, with most girls starting their periods

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