Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers that affect women in the United States. Early detection is vital and provides the greatest possibility for successful treatment. When breast cancer is detected early and is in the localized stage, the 5-year relative survival rate is 100% (National Breast Cancer Foundation, 2017). A good early detection plan is one that incorporates monthly breast self- exams, routine clinical breast exams, and following guidelines and healthcare providers’ recommendations around mammograms. Additionally, although there is no known prevention method for breast cancer, there are several lifestyle factors, that are directly linked with optimum breast health. This includes the consumption of a balanced diet, routine exercise, limiting alcohol, avoiding tobacco products and maintaining a healthy weight.
Prevention methods, treatment, and outcomes have all improved as a result of the support and advocacy of those individuals, organizations, and public officials both locally, and on a national level. To continue to fight against breast cancer, the support cannot dissipate. It is because of the continued awareness and support gained, that has made this a priority issue and one that has raised funds to reduce the risk of cancer, provided the infrastructure for programming, and created opportunities for groundbreaking research to evolve. There are various ways to get involved, and your participation is vital. In honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, let’s continue to actively fight against breast cancer. To learn more about how to get involved, please check out the following resources:
The Dana Farber Cancer Institute Mammography Van will be at Neponset Health Center on October 20, 2017. Current patients can book an appointment on the van by calling 617-282-3200.
Marissa Goldman-Halpin, MSW
Women’s Health Manager, Neponset Health Center