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October is breast cancer awareness month
This is something that I speak about every year as it is near and dear to my heart.
My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 45, she was one of the lucky ones, after having a mastectomy she didn’t need chemotherapy or radiation and she went on to be completely healthy until her seventies.
My aunt was not so lucky, she waited when she found a lump and she died of breast cancer way too early.
I have been getting check ups since I was in my late 20’s. Every year I get a mammogram and a sonogram and I encourage all my women friends to do the same.
Here are some startling facts from the Breast Cancer Association:
-About 40,610 women in the U.S. are expected to die in 2017 from breast cancer, though death rates have been decreasing since 1989.
-Women under 50 have experienced larger decreases. These decreases are thought to be the result of treatment advances, earlier detection through screening, and increased awareness.
-For women in the U.S., breast cancer death rates are higher than those for any other cancer, besides lung cancer.
-Besides skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among American women. In 2017, it’s estimated that about 30% of newly diagnosed cancers in women will be breast cancers.
-In women under 45, breast cancer is more common in African-American women than white women. Overall, African-American women are more likely to die of breast cancer. For Asian, Hispanic, and Native-American women, the risk of developing and dying from breast cancer is lower.
-As of March 2017, there are more than 3.1 million women with a history of breast cancer in the U.S. This includes women currently being treated and women who have finished treatment.
-A woman’s risk of breast cancer nearly doubles if she has a first-degree relative (mother, sister, daughter) who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Less than 15% of women who get breast cancer have a family member diagnosed with it.
-About 5-10% of breast cancers can be linked to gene mutations (abnormal changes) inherited from one’s mother or father. Mutations of the BRCA1 and BRCA2
genesare the most common. On average, women with a BRCA1 mutation have a 55-65% lifetime risk of developing breast cancer.
-For women with a BRCA2 mutation, the risk is 45%. Breast cancer that is positive for the BRCA1 or BRCA2
mutations tends to develop more often in younger women.
-An increased ovarian cancer risk is also associated with these genetic mutations. In men, BRCA2 mutations are associated with a lifetime breast cancer risk of about 6.8%; BRCA1mutations are a less frequent cause of breast cancer in men.
-About 85% of breast cancers occur in women who have no family history of breast cancer. These occur due to genetic mutations that happen as a result of the aging process and life in general, rather than inherited mutations.
-The most significant risk factors for breast cancer are gender (being a woman) and age (growing older).
These facts are both good news and bad news for us as women but again the best prevention we have right now is early detection.
We must encourage each other to take care of each other, to make ourselves a priority in our lives. On a plane the one thing they teach you over and over is if anything happens put the air mask over your face first, then over your loved ones.
Same advice in life, you must take care of you first in order to take care of others. So take the time today, call your girlfriends, make a day out of it, go together, have some wine afterwards and laugh how things would change if men had to get their dicks smashed in a machine all ways till Tuesday but don’t put it off, do it for your loved ones, they want to keep you around for a long time.
In the month of October, they have free or low cost mamograms all over the country, call the National Breast Cancer Foundation or
The Susan G. Komen Foundation
Today to schedule yours today.
Don’t lose your life over your fear.
“Be the change you want to see”
“And just when the caterpillar thought his life over…he turned into a beautiful butterfly”
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