Breast Cancer Facts

Breast Cancer Facts

Myths and Facts

UNFORTUNETLY, breast cancer is the leading cancer among women in India.

FORTUNETLY, it is one of the most easily detectable forms of cancer.

UNFORTUNETLY, 1 in every 22 women stands the risk of developing it during her lifetime.

FORTUNETLY, the survival rate is as high as 98% if caught early.

UNFORTUNETLY, breast cancer is the leading cancer among women in India.

FORTUNETLY, breast cancer is the leading cancer among women in India.

UNFORTUNETLY, breast cancer is not openly talked about.

FORTUNETLY, that can change.

If, we take a step today!!!

MYTH: I don’t have a family history of breast cancer, so I am not at risk.

FACT: Most women who develop breast cancer have no family history of the disease. You may have heard about other risk factors, such as having someone in your family with breast cancer or having an inherited breast cancer gene. But the truth is that most women with breast cancer don’t have these other risk factors. All women are at risk for breast cancer and your risk only increases as you get older.

MYTH: I am too young to worry about breast cancer.

FACT: Except for certain types of skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common form of cancer diagnosed in women of all ages. Although the most confirmed and noteworthy risk factors for developing breast cancer are gender and growing older, younger women diagnosed with breast cancer often experience a more aggressive cancer and a lower chance of survival. The breast tissue of younger women is thicker than that of older women and can make diagnosis difficult. Because of this, it is vital that women begin monthly breast selfexaminations at age 20, so that you can become familiar with how your breasts look and how they feel, thereby making it easier for you to notice any changes.

MYTH: I can do a breast self-examination at any time.

FACT: You should perform the self-exams at the same time each month, three to five days after your menstrual period ends, when your breasts are the least tender and lumpy. If you have stopped menstruating, perform the exam on the same day of each month. Report any changes to your doctor or nurse. Go for regular clinical breast examinations and ask about a mammogram.

MYTH: After puberty, my breasts do not change.

FACT: Your breast will go through many natural changes from puberty through menopause. And, like most women, you may experience some common breast changes at some point in your life. These conditions might include lumps, pain, and nipple discharge. The good news is that many of these changes are both common and benign (noncancerous). For instance, your breasts may feel swollen and tender before your period. This is called cyclic breast changes, a breast condition that affects about half of all women. Cyclic breast changes are always related to your period. That’s because your breast tissue is influenced by the same hormones that affect your period. Your breasts may even feel tender and heavy. Lumps form when extra fluid collects in the breast. These are normal changes. Both lumps and swelling generally go away by the end of the period. It’s a good idea to tell your doctor about any—even common—changes.

MYTH: Mammograms are harmful because they use radiation.

FACT: A mammogram is an x-ray picture of the breast. It has the ability to detect breast cancers before they can be felt. It uses a very small amount of x-ray radiation that is not harmful. Currently, mammograms are the best screening tool widely available to detect breast cancer at its earliest, most treatable stages.

MYTH: The only way to discover if I have breast cancer is by having a mammogram.

FACT: Sometimes breast cancer will not be seen in a mammogram but can be felt during a clinical examination by your doctor or nurse in an office or clinic. He or she will look at and feel your breasts and under your arms for breast changes. You should have a breast examination when you are 20 years old and at least every three years until you are 39 years old. If you are over age 40, you should have a breast examination every year.

MYTH: I am at a greater risk for breast cancer because my breasts feel lumpy and tender at certain times of the month.

FACT: Breast lumpiness with tenderness or pain at certain times of the month is called fibrocystic breast changes. These breast changes do not increase your chance of getting breast cancer. Conduct a breast self-examination each month and get to know the way your breasts look and feel. Learn what is normal for you. If you notice a change, see your doctor right away.

MYTH: There isn’t anything I can do to help prevent breast cancer.

FACT: By maintaining good health, you can lower your risk for breast cancer. Eating fruits, vegetables, and grains; maintaining your weight after menopause; exercising; and drinking less than one drink of alcohol a day can improve your overall health and help prevent breast cancer.

MYTH: Birth control pills have no affect on my chances of developing breast cancer.

FACT: If you are currently taking birth control pills, your breast cancer risk is slightly increased. The increased risk from using birth control pills becomes less after you have stopped using them. After about 10 years, your risk returns to normal.

MYTH: Breastfeeding increases my chances of developing breast cancer.

FACT: Once actively debated, there is now solid evidence that breastfeeding can lower the risk of breast cancer. Two recent, large analyses that combined the results from numerous breastfeeding studies found that women who breastfed had a moderately lower risk of breast cancer compared to those who had not.

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