October Breast Cancer Awareness Month
During the month of October Breast Cancer Awareness is highlighted as it is still the most common cancer diagnosed for women in Australia. Breast cancer occurs when abnormal cells in the breast grown in an uncontrolled way.
Breast cancer is not found in a particular age group. The disease can affect younger women, older women and some men. 80 out of 100 women diagnosed with invasive breast cancer are surviving 5 or more years past initial diagnosis.
A specific cause for breast cancer has not been determined, there are factors that may contribute to increasing your risk to the disease. Factors may include:
- Increase in age
- Being a woman
- Strong family history
- Personal history of breast cancer
- Lifestyle factors
Although survival rates have improved, it is still important to check breasts regularly and with a bit of vigilance and regular screening, early detection gives you the best chance to overcome the disease.
What to look for:
- Skin redness or dimpling
- A new lump or lumps in one breast
- Changes in size or breast shape
- A pain that persists in the breast
- Nipple discharge
Changes may not always be due to cancer, hormones may play a role. If you detect a change, see a doctor immediately.
Diagnosis and Treatment Options
Options are available from hormonal therapies, radiotherapy, targeted therapies and chemotherapy. The most suitable treatment as well as the duration and postoperative care, should be made with your doctor and a treatment team to support you. For more information email the National Breast Cancer Foundation firstname.lastname@example.org or learn more from the Breast Cancer Network and call tel:1800 500 258.