Breast cancer facts

Breast Cancer!! The word strikes fear in the hearts of many and justifiably with good reason. Breast cancer facts are now emerging and it is one the most frequently diagnosed cancers among women. Almost one in three cases diagnosed will be breast cancer. It is cited that 211,240 cases(1) of breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2005 alone in the US. Also it is the leading cause of death in women, nearly 40,000 deaths(2) were attributed to this in 2003-2004. It is a little known fact that men can be diagnosed with breast cancer too, although, it is a very small percentage, which is why; it is seldom discussed or studied.

So what is breast cancer? In the simplest terms, all the cells in our body grow and multiply regularly. Breast cancer occurs when some cells in the breast start multiplying uncontrollably causing a lump or tumor, although most lumps are benign, some end up being cancerous.

Consider these breast cancer facts(3) about the incidence of cancer with respect to age: 22% of breast cancer cases occur in women under age 50, 48% of cases occur in women ages 50 to 69, 30% of cases occur in women age 70 and over. Since no one is spared the chance of getting it, it would be prudent to do what we can to prevent it as well as get detected as early as possible if at all. The simplest thing we can do is to have a breast self-exam and get a screening mammogram done as per medical advice.

The sooner the cancer is detected, the greater the chances for survival. Look at these breast cancer facts(1):" Progress in both early detection and treatment of breast cancer has resulted in decreasing mortality rates in most segments of the population during the 1990s; more than 90% of breast cancers are now diagnosed at localized and regional stages, for which five-year survival rates are 97% and 79%, respectively.

Breast cancer facts are definitely to be taken into consideration, but all is not lost. Simple life style choices like eating right, exercising, not smoking and adopting a holistic attitude are supposed to go a long way in enhancing the quality of life and reducing risk.

Of course ladies, go get that mammogram today or take your near and dear ones if they need one too. Gentlemen, you have a responsibility too. Make sure that special person in your life, it can be your mom, sister or girlfriend, gets one done too. Always remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

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