Do you know about Breast Cancer? – A timely review

The month of October is named as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The year 2020 reminds us that we have to fight challenges together with the right actions. The same applies to breast cancer prevention as well. We need to raise awareness and reduce the stigma of breast cancer by working together.

Do you know that out of every 100 cancer cases reported among Sri Lankan women, 25 are related to breast cancer?

Women are the heart of the family, which is the basic unit of each and every nation. Moreover, Sri Lankan working women contribute to 35.294% of the labor force participation of the country (https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SL.TLF.CACT.FE.ZS?locations=LK). Women have taken a significant role in everyone’s life by being a mother, a wife, a sister, a daughter, a grandmother, or even a lover. Even though males also can be diagnosed with breast cancer it is 100 times lesser than what it is for women. 

“40% of diagnosed breast cancers are detected by women who feel a lump, so establishing a regular breast self-exam is very important.”

Johns Hopkins Medical center
The best protection is early detection

It has been found that early detection of breast cancer can mitigate most of its consequences and save your life. What we have to do is a simple self-examination. According to the medical experts, every woman aged above 20 has to examine their own breasts once a month for any abnormalities. It can be a lump in a breast, a change in the shape ( distortion or swelling), a painful breast or armpit, or a discharge from the nipple.

Don’t be ignorant, be aware of your precious life!

It is just a simple self-examination that can be described as a TLC method (Touch your breasts, Look for changes, Check any changes with your Physician). Here we will provide some useful links where you can find a detailed description of how to do the self-examination of your breasts.

Do not hesitate to consult your doctor.

Then the next problem is what if I find any of these symptoms? First thing is, you don’t need to panic. Most of the time it can be a non- cancerous cause. You just have to meet and check it with your Physician. They will direct you to further mammograms, MRI screenings if there is a need. Hence, we cannot underestimate the importance of regular breast checking to have an early diagnosis.  

Cancer Early Detection Center, a worthy donation of Rotary Club of Colombo.

In Sri Lanka, the National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP) has taken many initiatives to control breast cancer. Being a valuable partner, the Rotary Club of Colombo partnered with NCCP and the Ministry of Health to establish The Cancer Early Detection Center which provides many valuable services to detect cancers early. Screening for Breast cancer is one of its paramount services where individuals can have Clinical-Breast Examination, Ultrasound Scanning, and Mammography. This centre is located close to the Narahenpita junction towards Borella. For more details please go through the following links.

Do not let the fight fade away!

As a nation let’s battle with this silent killer to save precious lives. As we are passing the month, do not limit this effort to the month of October. Continue to spread the awareness and importance of early detection. Above all, share this knowledge with your mother, wife, sister, and daughter.

By Rtr. Odatha Bandara

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