October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
October 1, 2019
October 1, 2019
The month of October has been designated as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM). This provides an opportunity to explain the background and ongoing efforts surrounding this annual campaign. NBCAM began in 1985, as a collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the manufacturers of drugs that were designed to combat breast cancer.
The primary goals were to advance the awareness of mammograms, the continued presence of this disease, and the number of people who were impacted by it. The campaign has evolved as various entities have joined forces to increase funding for research, and bolster efforts toward prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of the disease. Information has also been created that supports the physical and mental efforts of patients who are contending with the condition.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the U.S. (behind skin cancer). It is also been stated by the National Breast Cancer Foundation that one in every eight U.S. women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during her lifetime. Every two minutes, another woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, while over 250,000 women are diagnosed with this disease on an annual basis. The mortality rate also exceeds 40,000 each year.
While breast cancer is extremely rare in men, it can still occur. Fewer than 1% of all breast cancer patients are men, and the lifetime risk of experiencing breast cancer is around 1 in 1,000. Still, it is estimated the nearly 2,500 men will be diagnosed this year with breast cancer.
The impact of a breast cancer diagnosis is certainly significant for any patient. It also affects all family members who experience the array of emotions that are also being dealt with by the individual who receives the original diagnosis, then undergoes treatment for the disease. It should also be noted that an estimated 33 million breast cancer survivors are currently living in the U.S.
Symptoms Of Breast Cancer
It is important to remember that the warning signs of breast cancer will vary between patients and that there are no noticeable symptoms in some cases.
However, if you or anyone that you know discovers a new lump in the breast, this is can be an indication of breast cancer. This is also the case for any new lump under either armpit.
Any swelling or thickening of the breast can be a sign of breast cancer, as is any pain in the breast, redness or flakiness in the nipple area, or irritation of the breast skin. Any type of discharge from the nipple can also indicate breast cancer.
It is also critical to know that these symptoms can emerge for reasons beyond the existence of breast cancer. However, your doctor will need to determine the cause for any of these symptoms. This makes it essential to visit a doctor immediately if you observe or experience any of the symptoms that were mentioned.
The Risks Of Getting Breast Cancer
We cannot change many of the factors that increase the risk of encountering breast cancer. This includes the aging process, as the majority of breast cancers patients are diagnosed after they reach age 50, and the average age for women is 61. Men who experience breast cancer are diagnosed most often between the ages of 60-70.
Other risk factors include a previous history of breast cancer or a different form of cancer. The chances also rise for anyone with a family history of the disease. In addition to having a mother, sister, or daughter that experienced breast cancer, having a male relative who dealt with breast cancer also elevates risk.
The chances of experiencing breast cancer also increase for women who have more connective tissue in their breasts, while between 5-10% of breast cancer cases occur due to abnormal genes that were received from the patient’s parent. Menstrual periods that transpired prior to age 12 or after reaching the age of 55 can also increase the risk.
How To Reduce The Risk
Some of the primary risk factors cannot be changed by altering lifestyles (age, family history). However, making a commitment to healthy lifestyle choices can reduce the risk of experiencing breast cancer.
This includes maintaining a healthy weight, retaining a regular exercise regimen, and eating healthy food. Smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol should also be avoided.
Early detection of breast cancer while it is in the localized stage also raises the survival rate for this disease. This can be accomplished through monthly self-exams and breast cancer screening.
Treatments For Breast Cancer
There are multiple methods of treatment for breast cancer, and the specifics of every situation will ultimately determine the exact treatment plan for each particular patient. This could entail multiple treatments in some cases.
Chemotherapy involves medicine that will diminish or eliminate the cancer cells, and this method can be accomplished through the use or by being infused into the veins. Radiation therapy can also be used through high energy x-ray technology to destroy cancer cells.
Hormonal therapy stops the cells from receiving the hormones that are needed for continued growth, while biological therapy operates in coordination with the body’s immune system toward helping it combat the cells.
In some cases, surgery will be the most feasible option since it will enable the surgeon to remove the cancer tissue.
At Rapid Med Urgent Care Center We Can Help
If you have any questions about breast cancer or any other health issue, do not hesitate to contact us at Rapid Med Urgent Care Center. Not only do we offer immediate medical attention for conditions that are not critical or life-threatening, but we also provide both primary and preventive care. This includes our assistance in obtaining vaccinations and immunizations.
Our Primary Care
Our intuitive approach and commitment to patients enable them to receive the specific type of care that they prefer, whenever they would like to have it. This includes:
- After Hours Care Available
- Continuity of Care
- Health Maintenance
- Patient Education
Our Preventative Care
- Alcohol Misuse Screening & Counseling
- Atherosclerosis Risk Factor Modification
- Blood Pressure Screening
- Cancer Screening
- Cholesterol Screening
- Depression Screening
- HIV-STD Screening
- Obesity Screening & Counseling
- Type 2 Diabetes Screening
- Weight Management
- Wellness Exams
Our Urgent Care
At Rapid Med Urgent Care Center we also provide immediate medical attention for conditions that are not critical or life-threatening.
- Allergies and Rashes
- Bronchitis and Pneumonia
- Evaluation of Acute Abdominal Pain
- Evaluation of Most Chest Pain
- Fevers – Down to 4 Months of Age
- Gastrointestinal Infections w/ Nausea & Vomiting
- Headaches and Migraines
- On-SiteUltrasound Diagnostics
- On-Site X-Rays
- Simple Gynecologic Problems
- Sinus Infections
- Skin Infections and Abscesses
- Sore Throats and Strep
- Urinary Tract Infections
Regardless of whether you are in need of primary care, preventative care or urgent care, you can receive the same great care and consideration that you receive by visiting our offices simply by using our On Demand service through your phone, tablet, or computer.