Breast Cancer Awareness

October is breast cancer awareness month. Every year nations worldwide publicize breast cancer to encourage and increase public support and knowledge for this disease.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer affecting females worldwide, it is the second leading cause of death among females and nearly one in eight females will be diagnosed in their lifetime.  Globally this equates to nearly one point five million new cases, and over four hundred and fifty thousand deaths annually. The level of incidence in low and middle income countries is rising due to an increase in urbanization and life expectancy and two hundred and thirty thousand women are being diagnosed in the later stages because of lack of information.  Currently, about seventy percent of women forty or older receive regular mammograms, and it remains the most effective screening tool to find cancers or tumors early on. In the last twenty years breast cancer screening has resulted in a thirty three percent decline in breast cancer mortality in the United States and five year relative survival rate of ninety-nine percent.

Foundations like Susan G. Komen for the Cure combat the lack awareness by hosting awareness events like the “Race for the Cure”, a global series of five-kilometer runs and fitness walks. Since its establishment in 1982, the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure has become the world’s largest breast cancer fundraiser, including 130 countries and one point six million participants annually. Susan G. Komen organization has donated and invested almost two billon dollars to breast cancer research, community health outreach and various programs in fifty countries around the globe.

Individuals can help show support by getting involved in local events, charity work or simply wearing the icon pink ribbon during the month of October.

References:

http://ww5.komen.org/AboutUs/AboutUs.html

http://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/breast-cancer-facts

http://www.who.int/cancer/events/breast_cancer_month/en/

 

Last updated 10 March 2013.

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