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  • Hannah McFarland

Fight for a Cure

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the United States. The average risk of a woman to develop breast cancer in her lifetime is about 13%, meaning there is a 1 in 8 chance of development. No matter what the percentage is, women who have been affected by cancer are more than a statistic. They are a mother, daughter, grandmother and a friend.

The month of October is a time to bring awareness to breast cancer and those who have been affected by it. We know awareness alone isn’t enough, so it is important to get involved, get screened and take action.

How to support someone with breast cancer:

  1. Practical support: Knowing how to help someone sometimes can be difficult. Those that are going through treatment often want to carry on doing as much as possible. Being there and offering support with everyday needs including cooking meals, cleaning, helping with children and taking them to appointments is often the best.

  2. Emotional support: Most people are shocked to hear that they have been diagnosed with cancer. A lot of emotions like fear, anger, sadness and depression can occur. Just being alongside someone and allowing them to express how they feel is very important.

Early Warning Signs of Breast Cancer

  • A lump in your breast or underarm that doesn’t go away.

  • Swelling in your armpit or near your collarbone. This could mean breast cancer has spread to your lymph nodes in that area.

  • Pain and tenderness, although lumps don’t usually hurt.

  • A flat or indented area on your breast.

  • Breast changes such as a difference in size, contour, texture, or temperature.

  • Changes in your nipples like burning, itching or developing sores.

  • Unusual discharge that is clear, bloody, or another color.

  • A marble-like area under your skin that feels different from any other part of either breast

Breast Cancer Screening Tests

The American Cancer Society recommends that women at risk for breast cancer start annual screening with mammograms at age 45. Women between the age of 40 to 44 can choose to begin getting exams yearly if they prefer too. Women who have a genetic history of breast cancer in their family or those that are showing symptoms are at the highest risk.

A mammogram is an X-ray of the breast. This method is often the best way to detect breast cancer early on when it is easier to treat. There are also other exams such as MRI’s and clinical breast exams. A breast MRI uses magnets and radio waves to take pictures of the breast. These are often used with mammograms to screen women who are at higher risk. A clinical breast exam is an examination performed by a doctor or nurse who uses his or her hands to feel lumps and changes.

This month we are #GoingPink to show our support for October Breast Cancer Awareness Month! Don't forget to wear your pink shirts to show your support to those affected by this disease.

Our Griffith and Bloomington areas!

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