Breast cancer is a disease that occurs when cells in the breast reproduce at an abnormal rate. It is the most prevalent form of cancer in women. It affects 2.1 million women every year, making it vital for breast cancer awareness. Worthy to note, breast cancer occurs in men too, although rarely.
Symptoms of Breast Cancer
The most common symptoms include a lump in the breast or under the armpits, pain in the nipple area, and discharges from the nipple, including blood. Some women also report scaly skin in the nipple area.
Note that these symptoms may result from an unrelated condition. You should get a qualified diagnosis from your doctor if you have any of these symptoms. Early detection allows for effective treatment.
Treatments of Breast Cancer
There are various treatment options for it; more often, doctors use more than one option for better success rates. These include surgery, medical procedure, and medication. Surgery involves the removal of a lymph node, part of, or the entire breast. It comes with risks of infection, a buildup of fluids at the site of surgery, and numbness in the chest. Medical procedures involve the exposure of cancerous cells to high-energy rays. These procedures may cause fatigue and skin changes at the site of treatment.
Medication involves the administering of drugs to target cancerous cells. The widely known chemotherapy falls under this category. It is mostly a secondary treatment option unless the cancer has spread from the breast, and alternative treatment options are not viable. In such instances, chemotherapy only serves to improve the quality and length of life. Hair loss is one of the common side effects of chemotherapy; however, it is temporary and you can manage it by gently handling hair and using a wig. Other side effects include nausea and infertility.
Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Every year, October marks the Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Most people mark this with the wearing of a pink ribbon. This is a period for enhancing attention and support towards the awareness of the disease, its early detection, and treatment. Also, it features various palliative care opportunities for cancer patients. Add your voice to the conversation, spread awareness!
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