Monday, October 5, 2015

Breast Cancer Awareness

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month, so it's time to raise awareness about this common form of cancer that affects over 230,000 women in the US every year. Cancer is a broad term for a class of diseases characterized by abnormal cells that grow and invade healthy cells in the body. Breast cancer starts in the cells of the breast as a group of cancer cells that can then invade surrounding tissues or spread (metastasize) to other areas of the body. 

When you’re told that you have breast cancer, it’s natural to wonder what may have caused the disease. But no one knows the exact causes of breast cancer. Doctors seldom know why one woman develops breast cancer and another doesn’t, and most women who have breast cancer will never be able to pinpoint an exact cause. What we do know is that breast cancer is always caused by damage to a cell's DNA. 

Women with certain risk factors are more likely than others to develop breast cancer. A risk factor is something that may increase the chance of getting a disease. Some risk factors (such as drinking alcohol) can be avoided. But most risk factors (such as having a family history of breast cancer) can’t be avoided. Having a risk factor does not mean that a woman will get breast cancer. Many women who have risk factors never develop breast cancer, and many women who have no risk factors do develop breast cancer - that's why early detection and treatment is so important! 

One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Although breast cancer in men is rare, an estimated 2,150 men will be diagnosed each year. When breast cancer is detected early, and is in the localized stage, the 5-year relative survival rate is 100%.* Create your early detection plan today: