The main causes of cancer death in women around the world
It’s easy to defer getting a mammogram. Maybe you don’t have insurance and are worried about the cost. You are busy with work and family. Or, I am worried that I may enter a medical facility and become infected with COVID-19.
Health First is here to reassure you that you are covered safely and to remind you how important it is to be proactive about your health.
Dr. Firas Muwalla, Medical Director of the Health First Cancer Institute, is here to address your concerns and provide advice on keeping up with breast health.
1.) I am worried that I will be infected with COVID-19 when I come to the mammogram.
“We take patient safety seriously,” said Dr. Muwalla. “Reservations are scheduled so that the waiting room, examination room, and filming location are not crowded.”
All equipment and inspection areas are cleaned and disinfected according to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations and strict safety protocols.
In addition, patients and visitors entering the Health First facility will be screened for questionnaires and temperature checks. According to the CDC guidelines, masking and social distance are perfectly effective.
High-contact surfaces are cleaned all day and plexiglass dividers are installed to protect patients and employees alike in the check-in area.
2.) Pay attention to the statistics – and manage your own health.
What is the best thing Dr. Mwara wants women to know? be careful.
“Globally, breast cancer is the second most frequently diagnosed malignancy after lung cancer, accounting for more than 2 million cases annually,” said Dr. Muwalla. “This is the leading cause of cancer deaths in women around the world.”
In the United States alone, breast cancer is the most common cancer experienced by women and the second most common cause of cancer death in women.
“It accounts for 260,000 cases each year and causes more than 40,000 deaths,” said Dr. Muwalla.
3.) What are the risk factors?
For breast cancer, about 50% of newly diagnosed cases are associated with known risk factors. An additional 10% is associated with a positive family history.
The risk factors are:
▪ Age: The probability of developing breast cancer between the ages of 50 and 59 in the United States is 1 in 14 women over the age of 70, compared to 1 in 42.
▪ Gender: Breast cancer occurs 100 times more often in women than in men.
▪ Race: White women have the highest incidence of breast cancer.
▪ Body Weight and Body Fat: Obesity (defined as BMI greater than 30) is associated with an overall increase in breast cancer morbidity and mortality, especially in postmenopausal women.
▪ Tall: Increased height is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women.
▪ Estrogen level: High levels of endogenous estrogen increase the risk of breast cancer, especially hormone receptor-positive breast cancer in both postmenopausal and premenopausal women. This means that the growth of these specific cancer cells is promoted by hormones such as estrogener progesterone.
▪ Benign breast disease: The category of benign breast disease includes a wide range of pathological entities. Of these, proliferative lesions, a group of non-cancerous conditions characterized by increased growth of specific cells in the breast, are associated with an increased risk of breast cancer.
▪ High density breast tissue
▪ Exogenous hormones/ Menopausal hormone replacement therapy
▪ Reproductive factors: This includes early onset menstruation and subsequent menopause, childlessness, infertility, and becoming an elderly mother during the first pregnancy.
▪ Breast cancer history: This is either a personal history of breast cancer or a family history of breast cancer.
▪ Hereditary genetic mutations: BRCA, p53, STK 11, CDH 1, PALB 2, PT EN, and mismatch repair genes
▪ Lifestyle factors: Alcohol use, smoking and night shifts are one of the criminals.
4.) What are the symptoms of breast cancer?
Breast lumps may be related to:
▪ Thick skin on the breast
▪ Nipple deformity / secretion
▪ Skin depression
▪ Changes in armpit lymph node size and consistency
▪ If the cancer has metastasized, there may be respiratory problems (lung metastases) or brain function problems including headache or nerve, spinal cord or seizures (brain metastases)
5.) Please tell us about the importance of mammograms.
There is more scientific evidence associated with breast cancer screening than any other cancer. A systematic review of randomized trials found that mammography screening in women aged 40 to 69 significantly reduced breast cancer mortality by 15% to 20%.
“Generally speaking, early-stage cancers are more likely to cure than advanced-stage cancers,” said Dr. Mwara. “Mammography screening leads to early detection of breast cancer and saves lives.”
Breast cancer mortality has dropped dramatically since the 1980s.
“This is believed to be related to improved breast cancer treatment and mammography screening,” said Dr. Muwalla.
6.) How urgent is it to see a doctor if a woman finds something strange?
Most breast cancers do not progress rapidly to malignancy, so there is no need to rush to the ER. However, we recommend that you evaluate as soon as possible.
7.) How important is early detection?
That is why screening mammography is highly recommended.
“A systematic review found that mammography screening reduced breast cancer mortality by 15% to 20%,” said Dr. Muwalla. “This is at least partly related to early detection.”
In addition to being able to save lives, early detection allows breast cancer patients to detect their disease early enough to avoid chemotherapy after breast cancer surgery.
In countries where breast cancer screening programs have been established, most breast cancers are diagnosed after the patient’s mammogram is considered abnormal. However, if the mammogram does not detect a breast mass, up to 15% of women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Another 30% of breast cancers are found after a breast mass is detected during a normal mammogram (interval cancer).
8.) What if I am concerned about costs?
To give more women access to the health care they need, including mammogram screening, Health First will prevent this when scheduled for October (completed by 31 December). We offer screening for $ 100. 3D mammography is available for an additional $ 25.
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