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Promoting and understanding breast health. Gender-Related Health Killinger. First of all, what is a ‘breast’?. Everything from armpit to sternum From above your collar bone to your mid rib cage Men, you have them too!. How common is breast cancer?. The most common cancer in women

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promoting and understanding breast health

Promoting and understanding breast health

Gender-Related Health


first of all what is a breast
First of all, what is a ‘breast’?
  • Everything from armpit to sternum
  • From above your collar bone to your mid rib cage
  • Men, you have them too!
how common is breast cancer
How common is breast cancer?
  • The most common cancer in women
  • 1 in 3 cases of CA in women is breast CA
  • 192,000 new cases in 2001
  • Women have a 1 in 8 chance of getting breast CA during their life
how dangerous is breast cancer
How dangerous is breast cancer?
  • 40,200 deaths in 2001
  • Chances of survival good though;
    • 86% survival rate 5 years after diagnosis
    • 76%…………….10 years……….
    • 58%……………..15 years………..
    • 53%……………..20 years
who is at greatest risk
Who is at greatest risk?
  • Women
  • Over the age of 50 (40?)
  • Have mom or sisters w/ breast cancer
  • Have no children and or delaying child bearing until after age 30
  • History of breast cancer in the past
  • Overweight
oy the jewish connection
Oy, the Jewish Connection
  • Ashkenazi Jews may have three genetic coding errors that may predispose them to breast and ovarian cancer
  • BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes (blood test)
  • Can carry the genetic risk factors without developing cancer (These genes account for only 5-10% of all breast cancers)
some preventable risks
Some preventable risks:
  • Alcohol consumption > 1 serving/day
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Oral contraceptives
  • Breastfeeding (protects)
  • Delaying childbearing increases risk
  • Having no children
  • High fat diet
prevention recommendations
Prevention recommendations:
  • Increase physical activity
  • Limit alcohol consumption
  • Limit fat intake
  • Control weight
  • Have children early, and breastfeed them
what are the recommended screenings prevention
What are the recommended screenings/prevention?
  • Age 20-39:
    • Monthly self exams of the breast
    • Clinical breast exam every 3 years
  • Age 40 and over:
    • Annual mammogram
    • Clinical breast exam by health professional EVERY YEAR
    • Monthly breast self exam
what are the warning signs
What are the warning signs?
  • Discharge or bleeding from nipples, or change in nipple shape/location
  • Changes in size, shape, or contour of breast
  • Lumps, flattened areas, or indentations in breast
  • Puckered skin on breast
  • Moles or sores that have grown, darkened, or changed shape
why self breast exam
Why Self Breast Exam?
  • If you don’t know what your normal feels like, you will have trouble feeling “abnormal”!
  • You should (do?) care more about your health than any health professional: You will take the time to exam your own breasts thoroughly!
  • You will check both lying and standing. Many doctors won’t take the time!
  • Self Exam costs nothing
  • It has no side effects or risks
  • It can be done by anyone (with hands)
  • It may be the earliest detection/prevention strategy (if done regularly!)
how can i get in the habit
How can I get in the habit?
  • Connect the breast exam to something else in your regular routine (shower?)
  • Get a plastic reminder card to post in your shower
  • Get reminder stickers for the calendar
  • Use the ‘buddy’ system (call a friend to remind them, and they’ll call you next month)
excuses excuses
Excuses, excuses….
  • But, nobody in my family has breast cancer.

(Being female is enough of a risk factor. Everyone in this category should do regular self exams. If you are getting older, over 40 your risk is even higher.)

if you find a lump
If you find a lump….
  • 8 out of 10 lumps are NOT cancer!!
  • Monitor lump for one menstrual cycle (take notes on pain, size, texture, etc.)
  • Mammogram/radiography
  • Ultrasound
  • Biopsy (definitive dx= seeing CA cells)
  • Lumpectomy
  • Mastectomy (partial/complete/radical)
  • Chemotherapy
if someone you know finds a lump
If someone you know finds a lump:
  • Remind them; most lumps are not cancer
  • Listen and ask if you can help
  • Have some info at hand
  • Give them a hug
  • See that they follow through and get checked if the lump persists
be a resource for your patients call 1 800 acs 2345

Be a resource for your patients: Call 1-800-ACS-2345

For information or patient education pamphlets on any type of cancer,

Call or go online:

more resources information sites
More resources/Information sites:
  • (1-800-IM AWARE)

(For information about breast health, info on reduced cost or free screenings and treatment options, etc.) (1-800-221-2141) For educational materials and early detection workshops) (1-800-Medicare)

more information
More information:
  • Gynecological Cancer Info: 1-800-444-4441
  • Women’s Cancer network Website: (Determine your risk for gynecological and breast cancer)
  • Gynecological Cancer Foundation: 1-312-644-6610 (