Now that I got your attention, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women, and in 2019 more than 260,000 women and 2,500 men were diagnosed with breast cancer. Nobody knows how many transgenders may be impacted in the future but the good news is there is a greater chance of survival today than there was twenty years ago or longer.
Losing a Mother and two of her sisters and my best friend to breast cancer was very hard to cope with especially because none of them had warning signs. All of them were in good health. According to cancer research, there are some risk factors that are out of your control, such as aging, family history of breast cancer and other genetic factors. The United States Preventative Services Task Force recommends getting a mammogram screening every two years if you are over the age of 50. If anyone has concerns, they should address them with their physician.
A few years ago, I received notice strongly recommending I get a second mammogram at a different location because there were problems with the equipment where my test was taken. I saw flashes of funerals and scheduled an appointment immediately. Luckily, it was the machine and I do not have breast cancer. But it made me think, how many people received similar notices and had surgery done or ignored the notices all together?
We all need to be in charge of our own bodies and learn about the warning signs, such as lumps in the breast or underarm, red or irritated breast skin or any change in the size or shape of the breast. Spouses and/or partners should inspect their loved ones too for unusual changes. Technically speaking, our bodies is all we really come into this world with and own. Early detection is important. Family history will determine when or how often to get a mammogram as instructed by your physician. Communication with trusted physicians and getting local support when needed can provide further education.
"There can be life after breast cancer. The prerequisite is early detection."
"Men need to be aware of the health of their bodies, as well - prostate cancer and breast cancer are almost on the same level. It's fascinating to me that the correlation between the two is almost the same - people don't talk about it much, but they are almost
equal in numbers." --- Olivia Newton-John
"Whether you're a mother or father, or a husband or a son, or a niece
or nephew or uncle, breast cancer doesn't discriminate."
"I was diagnosed with full-body cancer. I am the healthiest person you know.
You know I do it all. I take vitamins. I grew my own food. I do everything.
And it didn't fit, and it was so awful."