We’ve all lost someone dear to breast cancer. To support the fight against this dread disease, lots of activities are going on this month and next.
Facts to know:
- 1 woman in 8 will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime.
- 95 percent of new cases and 97 percent of breast cancer deaths (2000-2004) occurred in women aged 40 and older (“Breast Cancer Facts & Figures 2007-2008.” Atlanta: American Cancer Society, Inc. [http://www.cancer.org/downloads/STT/BCFF-Final.pdf].)
- Good news: Death rates from breast cancer have been declining since 1990. These decreases (especially in women younger than 50) are believed to be the result of earlier detection and improved treatment. A decline in hormone replacement therapy (HRT) may be responsible in part for the decrease in breast cancer incidence [http://www.cancer.org/docroot/cri/content/cri_2_4_1x_what_are_the_key_statistics_for_breast_cancer_5.asp].
Signs and symptoms of breast cancer may include these:
- A breast lump or thickening that feels different from the surrounding tissue
- Bloody discharge from the nipple
- Change in the size or shape of a breast
- Changes to the skin over the breast, such as dimpling
- Inverted nipple
- Peeling or flaking
Lifestyle choices that may reduce risk factors:
- Decrease your daily fat intake
- Increase fiber in your diet
- Eat fresh fruits and vegetables
- Limit alcohol
- Stay active
- Don’t smoke
-National Breast Cancer Awareness Month [http://www.nbcam.org/patient_questions_answers.cfm]