It’s Pink October this month!
Most of us know someone either directly or indirectly who has been affected by breast cancer, so we have put together some quick facts about the disease to help raise awareness #pinkoctober #checkyourbreasts
Breast cancer remains the most common cancer in women worldwide.1
In 2020, there were 2.3 million women diagnosed with breast cancer and 685,000 deaths globally attributed to the disease.2
Breast cancer can affect women at any age, although the risk of breast cancer is higher in later life.2
Gender is the foremost breast cancer risk factor, as approximately 99% of breast cancers occur in women.
Other risk factors include:2
- Alcohol abuse
- Family history
- Tobacco use
- History of radiation exposure
Around 50% of breast cancers develop in women with no identifiable risk factor other than female gender and age over 40 years.2
Warning signs include:3
- New lump in the breast or armpit
- Thickening or swelling of the breast
- Irritation or dimpling of the breast skin
- Unusual nipple discharge, which may contain blood
- Breast pain
These signs can occur with other conditions that are not cancer; however, it is important to seek medical help if you have any signs or symptoms that concern you.3
Staying healthy by maintaining an optimal weight and exercising regularly can help reduce the risk of developing breast cancer and improve the chance of survival if it is diagnosed.
1.Breast Cancer Statistics. World Cancer Research Fund https. https://www.wcrf.org/dietandcancer/breast-cancer-statistics/ [accessed 11 October 2021]
2.Breast Cancer. World Health Organization. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/breast-cancer [accessed 11 October 2021]
3.What are the symptoms of breast cancer? Centre for Disease Control. https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/breast/basic_info/index.htm [accessed 12 October 2021]