Breast Cancer Awareness

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Taylor Tames

The cheerleaders for the Boys & Girls club football team sport Breast Cancer Awareness themes bows for this month.

Alice Cai, Editor

This month is breast cancer awareness month, and as of now, there is little to no awareness of what breast cancer really is, what causes it, what effects it can have on health and its implications in daily life.

When most high school students hear the term, it holds little to no meaning, and some are not even certain what exactly breast cancer is.

Breast cancer is a common cancer in which cells in the breast grow out of control and form a tumor that invades surrounding tissues.

Some of the major breast cancer symptoms include:

  • a lump in the breast
  • asymmetry of the breasts
  • dimpling or swelling of the breast
  • nipple that is turned slightly inward

The diagnostic process for breast cancer uses mammograms, ultrasound, MRI, biopsies, and other lab tests.

There are four stages of breast cancer:

Stage 0-1: early detection, cancer cells confined to very limited area

Stage 2: early stages, evidence of cancer growth/spread

Stage 3: advanced cancer with evidence of cancer invasion of surrounding tissues

Stage 4: cancer has spread beyond the breast to other areas of the body

If a patient is diagnosed with breast cancer, they should take the following steps for treatment:

  1. Choose a doctor.
  2. Choose between standard treatment and clinical trials. “Standard treatments are methods that experts agree are appropriate, accepted, and widely used.” -National Breast Cancer Foundation
  3. Decide if surgery is desired.
  4. Consider using various types of therapy (chemo, radiation, hormone, and targeted therapy).

Here are some statistics about breast cancer:

  • One in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.
  • Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among women.
  • On average, one woman will die of breast cancer every thirteen minutes.

For more information, visit www.nationalbreastcancer.org.

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