Oct 6 2014
1 in 29 women in South Africa will be diagnosed with breast cancer; the good news is that if it’s detected early, there is an excellent chance of recovery.
WHAT IS BREAST CANCER?
A tumor can be benign (not dangerous to health) or malignant (has the potential to be dangerous). The term “breast cancer” refers to a malignant tumor that has developed from cells in the breast. Over time, cancer cells can invade nearby healthy breast tissue and make their way into the underarm lymph nodes, small organs that filter out foreign substances in the body. If cancer cells get into the lymph nodes, they then have a pathway into other parts of the body.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS
· difference in size breasts
· unusual swellings
· puckering of the skin
If you have any of these symptoms go to a health professional without delay. Many breast lumps are harmless, but they all must be checked.
Every woman needs to examine her breasts and underarms regularly every month, to check for any changes.
According to the Cancer Association of South Africa:
FEELING FOR CHANGE
1, While standing, place one hand behind your head. With the other hand, fingers flattened and using a circular motion, gently examine your breast. Do the same with the other breast.
- While lying down, follow the same instructions as before.
- Check your nipples for any unusual discharge. Do this by squeezing them gently.
LOOKING FOR CHANGE:
- Stand in front of a mirror and look carefully at your breasts
- Get to know your breasts, their shape, size and feel
- Become familiar with your breast tissue and how it changes during the month as you grow older
- Doing this takes only 10 minutes every month
- This can help you notice changes in your breasts
For further information: CANSA toll-free on 0800226622
Posted by Stella Heuer
October 6, 2014