Breast cancer is a potentially fatal disease that still affects millions of people every year.
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month which seeks to spread awareness of the disease that inflicts millions of women and men every year. Cancer can infect anyone, and that’s why it’s important to know what breast cancer is and how you can detect it early on to give you the best chances of survival.
What is Breast Cancer?
Healthy cells grow, do their job, divide into two identical versions of itself and repeat the process. Slight errors in DNA replication are normally corrected but when they can’t be, the cell will only grow and divide uncontrollably to form a tumor. If left uncontrolled, the cancer can spread to other parts of the body and eventually . . . lead to death.
Breast cancer is simply when the cancerous cells form inside of the breast.
Early detection is crucial as it gives the person the best chance at survival. A self-breast exam should be performed once a month to make sure there are no changes within your breast. A new lump, nipple inversion, severe redness, thickening of the breast skin, and continuous breast pain are all reasons to seek immediate medical treatment.
The way breast cancer is detected is by having a regularly scheduled mammogram. The breast is flattened and exposed to a small dose of X-rays and exposes any dense clumps. Most tumors are benign (harmless), but some are malignant (harmful) which is why breast exams are so important.
Visit nationalbreastcancer.org for more information.
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