As many enjoyed a weekend of great NFL football, some people may have asked what all the pink was about. The pink was the NFL’s way of promoting breast cancer awareness to the casual football fan.
Like many other organizations, the NFL has decided to take part in National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The first NBCAM started in 1985 as a week-long event to raise awareness of breast cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, 2.5 million people in the U.S. can claim to be breast cancer survivors.
One of the amazing statistics about breast cancer is the power of the physician. In one study 94% of women whose physicians recommended mammograms had obtained 1 in the last two years, while only 36% of women whose physician had not made the recommendation had done so.
Breast Cancer Prevention
One of the earliest signs of breast cancer in women can be a subtle finding on mammogram before it can even be felt. Because of this the American Cancer Society recommends:
- Women over the age of 40 obtain regular mammography
- Obtain annual clinical breast exams
- Perform monthly self breast exams
- Obtain a risk assessment from a physician
Early Signs of Breast Cancer
A women should also be aware of the early signs of breast cancer which include
- Any new, hard lump or thickening in any part of the breast
- Change in breast size or shape
- Dimpling or puckering of the skin
- Swelling, redness or warmth that does not go away
- Pain in one spot that does not vary with your monthly cycle
- Pulling in of the nipple
- Nipple discharge that starts suddenly and appears only in one breast
- An itchy, sore or scaling area on one nipple
As with any type of cancer prevention mammograms and breast exams are not perfect. Thats why it is important to talk to your physician to develop any individual prevention plan that takes into account your family history as well as other influencing factors.
For more information on Breast Cancer please take a look at the following links:
- NBCAM.org ~ Celebrating 25 years!
- Breast Cancer Research and Facts from the CDC
- CancerCare ~ Free, professional support for anyone affected by cancer