Moving From Awareness To Action
On Sept. 30, President Biden officially proclaimed October 2021 as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I encourage citizens, government agencies, private businesses, nonprofit organizations, and other interested groups, he stated, to join in activities that will increase awareness of what Americans can do to prevent and control breast cancer, and pay tribute to those who have lost their lives to this disease.
As a survivor, there is something special about seeing breast cancer assume the national stage, flanked by the presidential seal. But next year and in the years to come, I hope to see us move beyond awareness to action. Were plenty aware. Now lets get to work.
Hil Moss is an MBA/MPH candidate at Yale University, a breast cancer survivor and advocate, and a consultant to companies on patient-centered innovation.
Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Breast Cancer Awareness Month , also referred to in the United States as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month , is an annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer charities every October to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure.
Observances of the event have faced criticism for corporate involvement by drug companies, as well as instances of pinkwashing associated with the events.
What Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Breast cancer is scary, but many women dont take the time to get checked.
The good news is that there are things you can do to reduce your risk of getting breast cancer. During October every year, thousands of people across the country take part in National Breast Cancer Awareness Month by wearing pink ribbons or hosting events and fundraisers.
Get yourself checked for breast cancer during October every year!
Early signs of breast cancer can be a lump in your chest, painful or itchy breasts, and even an unusual discharge from one nipple. This is something you should talk to your doctor about because they will most likely perform manual exams as well as sending out for mammograms which are painless and only take about ten minutes total.
Recommended Reading: Malignant Neoplasm Of Breast Treatment
Risk Factors And Prevention
Not all cases of breast cancer can be prevented, but some can. Certain risk factors for breast cancer, such as genetics, are inherent to an individual and cannot be changed. Others are related to a persons lifestyle. This animation highlights some of the things that affect your risk of developing breast cancer and some behaviours you can adopt to reduce your risk.
Here is an informative video from WHO:
How To Raise Awareness For Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Every October, people all over the world show their support for everyone affected by breast cancer. Were focused on accelerating research and providing vital support, every way we can no matter who you are or what your experience of this disease may be like. This month is Breast Cancer Awareness Month now more than ever its important that those who have been impacted know theyre not alone in fighting these battles!
- Learn the Signs and symptoms to be aware of after primary breast cancer https://breastcancernow.org/information-support/signs-symptoms-be-aware-after-primary-breast-cancer
- Raise awareness of breast cancer in men https://breastcancernow.org/information-support/have-i-got-breast-cancer/breast-cancer-in-men
Don’t Miss: Did Anne Hathaway Have Breast Cancer
Dont Play With Your Health Get Checked
1 in 7 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Mammograms are the best way to find breast cancer early, when it is easier to treat, and before it is big enough to feel or cause symptoms.
Currently there is not sufficient knowledge on the causes of breast cancer, therefore, early detection of the disease remains the cornerstone of breast cancer control. When breast cancer is detected early, and if adequate diagnosis and treatment are available, there is a good chance that breast cancer can be cured. If detected late, however, curative treatment is often no longer an option.
The majority of deaths occur in low- and middle-income families, where most women with breast cancer are diagnosed in late stages due mainly to lack of awareness on early detection and barriers to health services.
Knowing That You Have A Genetic Risk Of Cancer Allows You To Take Steps To Avoid Getting Cancer Called Previving The Cancer
Previving cancer is even better than Surviving cancer.
- I survived breast cancer but I previved ovarian cancer because I learned that I carried a cancer gene. My grandmother died from ovarian cancer so she did not previve or survive it. I never met her.
- Angelina Jolie previved breast and ovarian cancer because she knew she had a BRCA gene mutation.
National Previvor Day is September 30th this year. Previving is the goal for those who have a gene mutation for cancer.
Recommended Reading: Invasive Ductal Carcinoma Hereditary
After A Breast Cancer Diagnosis Many Black Women Face Barriers That Delay Their Care
Dont just be aware of the disease. Be aware of us. In the midst of the pink madness, it can be easy to forget what breast cancer really is: an ugly disease that takes the lives of far too many people each year. In the U.S. alone, nearly 4 million people mostly women, but men can develop breast cancer, too have a history of breast cancer. Dont get me wrong: We want as many people as possible to be aware of this cause. But we are more than pink ribbons, more than the statistics you see adorning the October campaigns.
If someone in your life is affected by breast cancer, check in on them this month. See how they are faring with the constant reminders. If they want to participate in BCAM activities, thats great but follow their lead.
Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day
October 13th is nationally recognized as the official Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day. In honor of MBC survivors, their loved ones, and those who’ve passed from the disease, over 200 landmarks around the globe will be illuminated in green, teal, and pink that day. If a landmark isn’t lit up in your city, you can tune in to a virtual broadcast, #LightUpMBC Live, which will feature stories told by members of the MBC community.
Stand with them: The virtual broadcast will stream at 8:30 p.m. ET on LiveXLive, METAvivor.org, and . Get more info and RSVP here.
Read Also: What Blood Test Can Detect Breast Cancer
A Proclamation On National Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2021
During National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we stand with the courageous women and men who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and honor those who have lost their battle to this terrible disease. As the second most common cancer affecting women, an estimated 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer over the course of their lifetime and 281,550 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States in 2021. Cancer touches so many families across the country including ours. It is up to all of us to continue fighting for a cure and to ensure that every American has access to the quality care they need.
The Affordable Care Act has expanded coverage to millions of women who were previously uninsured and has given millions of women access to preventive services, including screening tests such as mammograms with no out-of-pocket costs. Additionally, insurance companies can no longer discriminate against women with pre-existing conditions, such as breast cancer. My Administration is committed to protecting and building on the ACA to ensure that more people have access to quality, affordable health care and to lifting the inequitable health burden that falls on Black women.
More information on breast cancer is available at cancer.gov/breast. Information specialists at the National Cancer Institute are also available to help answer cancer-related questions in English and Spanish at 1-800-422-6237.
JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.
Signs And Symptoms Of Breast Cancer
The most common signs of breast cancer include:
Lump in the breast or underarm
Swelling or thickening of all or part of the breast
Dimpling or irritation of breast skin
Localized, persistent breast pain
Redness, scaliness or thickening of the nipple or breast skin
Nipple retraction or discharge
Any change in the size or shape of the breast
It is important to remember that breast lumps are common, particularly in premenopausal women. There are many different kinds of lumps, most of which are not cancerous tumors. The majority of lumps turn out to be benign, such as the soft, fluid-filled lumps that feel tender , the rubbery lumps that move around under the skin and are usually painless, or the fibrocystic changes leading to painful, lumpy breasts. Benign lumps develop from fatty tissue deposits or breastfeeding when sacs filled with milk form cysts. One can even get a lump as a result of an injury, such as when your breast gets bruised or after breast surgery. Every woman should learn about these signs and do monthly breast self-exams along with regular mammograms, which, along with knowledge of risk factors of breast cancer, can help women keep this disease at bay.
Also Check: Is Breast Cancer Curable At Stage 3
The Primary Types Of Breast Cancer
Ductal carcinoma: It is the most common type of breast cancer and begins in the lining of the milk ducts . Ductal carcinoma may be either ductal carcinoma in situ or invasive ductal carcinoma .
Lobular carcinoma: This cancer begins in the lobules of the breast and may be either lobular carcinoma in situ or invasive lobular carcinoma . LCIS rarely becomes invasive, but having it in one breast increases the risk of developing invasive cancer in either breast.
Inflammatory breast cancer: A type of breast cancer in which the breast looks red and swollen and feel warm. The redness and warmth occur because the cancer cells block the lymph vessels in the skin.
Triple-negative breast cancer: This describes breast cancer cells that do not have estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors or large numbers of HER2/neu protein. It is also called ER-negative PR-negative HER2/neu-negative breast cancer.
Recurrent breast cancer: Breast cancer can recur when treatment doesnt fully remove or destroy all the cancer cells.
Embrace Engage Empower: A Metastatic Thriver Retreat
Since 2017, SurvivingBreastCancer.org has empowered those diagnosed with breast cancer and their families by serving as an educational and virtual community platform. They take an integrative and collaborative approach to breast cancer, focusing on a combination of risk reduction strategies and prevention, treatment, survivorship, tools for living with a terminal diagnosis, navigating end-of-life, and beyond. For Breast Cancer Awareness Month, this year, SBC is hosting a virtual expert panel discussion on the latest in care and treatment of metastatic breast cancer . The event will also feature a literary arts activity led by Miami Cancer Institute guest artist, Darius Daughtry.
Stand with them:Join in on October 2 at 9 a.m. ET on Zoom.
You May Like: What Are The Chances Of Getting Breast Cancer Twice
Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walks
All throughout October, the American Cancer Society will host fundraising walks as part of their Making Strides Against Breast Cancer campaign. Money raised by walkers will fund breast cancer research and provide patient services like rides to chemotherapy appointments, places to stay near treatment, and a 24/7 cancer helpline.
Stand with them: When you , you can choose to lead a team, join an existing team, or participate solo.
Breast Cancer: The Brand
Breast cancer is a unique case study in disease branding. Breast Cancer Awareness Month , launched in 1985 by the American Cancer Society and Imperial Chemical Industries , was originally intended to encourage women to get regular mammograms. The momentum around breast cancer awareness continued in the early 1990s, when Evelyn Lauder established the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and solidified the pink ribbon as a universal symbol for the disease. The rest, as they say, is history.
You might ask: A month dedicated to raising awareness for a pressing challenge in modern health care what could possibly be wrong with that?
The answer is, to borrow a term coined by Breast Cancer Action, pinkwashing. What began as a strategic, research-driven, and ultimately effective fundraising approach has been co-opted by many in the name of profit.
Throughout the month of October, companies eager to drive sales plaster their products with pink ribbons and inspirational quotes. The best of them contribute all or a significant percentage of the proceeds to the cause. Many others commit nominal amounts or nothing at all. Breast cancer survivors are flooded with requests to participate in corporate campaigns, often with no promise of compensation.
Recommended Reading: What Is The Prognosis For Stage 4 Breast Cancer
Sharing Your Story Is Easy
What Are The Symptoms And Signs Of Breast Cancer
- A change in how the breast or nipple looks or feels
- A change in the breast or nipple appearance
- Any type of nipple dischargeparticularly clear discharge or bloody discharge
- Skin irritation, such as redness, thickening or dimpling of the skin
- Swollen lymph nodes in the armpit
Every person should know the symptoms and signs of breast cancer, and any time an abnormality is discovered, it should be looked at by a healthcare professional.
- Ages 40-44: Women should have the option to start screening with a mammogram every year.
- Ages 45-54: Women should get a mammogram every year.
- Women age 55 and older can switch to a mammogram every other year or choose to continue annual mammograms.
All women should understand what to expect when getting a mammogram for breast cancer screening what the test can and cannot do.
You May Like: Did Anne Hathaway Have Breast Cancer
For Breast Cancer Prevention Share Good Info Not Hearts
ACSH relies on donors like you. If you enjoy our work, please contribute. Your gift today will be matched by three generous donors
The American Council on Science and Health is a research and education organization operating under Section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions are fully tax-deductible. ACSH does not have an endowment. We raise our funds each year primarily from individuals and foundations.
Reasons Why Your Should Be Talking About Breast Cancer
In this talk, Ximena Alvira MD, PhD, shares the highlights of the history of breast cancer, and why we should start talking about it.Through a patient journey, we observed how clinical decision support can support in obtaining and applying current, relevant, timely clinical information.
To view this embedded content, please enable Targeting cookies in yourCookies Settings
Dr. Ximena Alvira
Senior Clinical and Research Specialist, is a medical doctor and doctor in neuroscience with broad experience in clinical practice, research, and medical writing. Before joining Elsevier in 2012, Ximena practiced emergency medicine at several places, such as the renowned Massachusetts General Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, USA. At Elsevier, Ximena uses her clinical and research expertise to provide strategic counsel to organizations on how to advance in their research objectives, make better use of our solutions, and improve their research and scientific writing skills.
About CoppaFeel: They are the first breast cancer charity in the UK to solely create awareness amongst young people, with the aim of instilling the knowledge and tools they need to get to know their bodies. CoppaFeel likes to talk about a serious message in a light-hearted way, empowering people to start healthy habits for life.
Also Check: What Is Grade 2 Breast Cancer
Empowering A Sisterhood Healing By Fostering Hope Encourage To Cope And Survive To Thrive
Because of sponsors and donors like you, BCRC can provide valued services to our community free of charge. Please help the BCRC continue to provide essential support services during this critical time.
- Principle Women’s Care, Dr. Melissa Drake andOma Fertility, Dr. Daniel F. Rychlik
- Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians
- Sotheby’s International Realty
Yoga For Breast Cancer Care
SBC will host a 60-minute flow from Pamela, a certified yoga instructor with more than 20 years of experience. She also has a professional background in clinical oncology social work and is a breast cancer survivor. Her class will consist of an upper-body lymphatic drainage series, a gentle joint freeing series, and more soothing flows.
Stand with them:Join the free online event on October 11 starting at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Recommended Reading: How To Cure Breast Cancer With Baking Soda
What Are The Symptoms
There are different symptoms of breast cancer, and some people have no symptoms at all. Symptoms can include
- Any change in the size or the shape of the breast.
- Pain in any area of the breast.
- Nipple discharge other than breast milk .
- A new lump in the breast or underarm.
If you have any signs that worry you, see your doctor right away.
How You Can Help
Screening, Access & TreatmentMake a one-time or monthly donation to help a woman in need. New this year, choose exactly where your donation goes. Learn more.
Education our free Breast Problems That Arent Breast Cancer eBook.
SupportVolunteer to join virtually in Helping Women Now.Spread the word about Breast Cancer Awareness Month on , , , or .Host a virtual fundraiser or benefitting NBCF.
HopeProudly wear a pink ribbon during October or year-round.
Don’t Miss: How To Cure Breast Cancer With Baking Soda