Monday, 8 October 2012

Pink October!

The month of spreading awareness of breast cancer is here. This is my own little contribution towards this cause. For uninitiated, breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in all urban areas in India (and in world). The incidence is rising every day with 50% of the patients in stage 2 and 3, ultimately affecting survival rate. This disease not only affects a woman physically but also alters the way a woman perceives herself permanently, significantly lowering her sense of self worth. Surprisingly, for the high are of incidence for this disease, very few women seem to take the trouble of going to a doctor and getting herself examined. 5% of the reported cases are hereditary. Others fall victim to this disease because of lifestyle and environmental factors. The biggest proof of this fact is the higher incidence among urban woman as compared to rural. You are at increased risk if:
  • Someone in the family suffered from this disease
  • Not having children on having them in later stage
  • Not breastfeeding
  • Smoking or alcoholism
  • Obesity

This may sound clich├ęd but prevention is definitely better than cure. For early detection, following three steps are recommended:
  • Mamography every two years
  • Getting examined by a specialist
  • Self examination (your gynecologist will show you)

Every year in the month of October, many free camps are held to help women detect this disease at the earliest. Make the best use of it. In Chandigarh, one such camp is being organized at Moti Ram Arya School on 13-14 Oct, from 10am to 5 pm. Find out such camps in your city. Nowadays this month is celebrated with much hullabaloo, with many celebrities and monuments around the world donning pink look and funds being collected in the name of charity. I hope the effort goes beyond these gestures and reaches the real victims.

By that way, do you know that this disease affects men too, only the risk is 100% higher in women

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