As every year, the month of October dresses in pink which denotes breast cancer awareness and should be a blunt reminder for women of all ages that the most effective way to fight breast cancer is to detect it in time.
Breast cancer is the main cause of death in women worldwide since it has been swiftly prevailing. However, its diagnosis in time can save the lives of many women.
More than 1.3 million cases have been registered in the world, in which 99% are women and one in ninth women suffer from it making it the most common form of cancer.
Breast Cancer in Pakistan
The annual reported cases are estimated around 90,000 while more than 40,000 women die every year due to breast cancer in Pakistan.
If diagnosed in the first stage, Breast cancer has a 90% cure rate as compared to other cancers. Still, only 2 percent of the women report at an early stage because of ignorance and lack of awareness which is the major reason that 44% of women out of reported cases, expire annually.
“Myths and misconceptions, cultural beliefs, taboos and lack of awareness mainly hinder early diagnosis,” said Dr. Rufina Soomro, a renowned oncologist.
Cancer can infiltrate in a woman’s body for which the major causes can be all of the following or one of these.
- Sedentary life
- Bad nutrition
- Hereditary factors
How to Diagnose Early?
Breast cancer mostly is painless till it reaches the last stage, so basically its creepy and operates silently. With the help of these parameters, you can diagnose it early before it gets fatal.
- Regular breast self-exploration after 20 years of age.
- Once in a year, mammary ultrasound till 40 years of age.
- Mammary mammograms in older women at 40 years or after having children.
- Observe abnormal coloration, subsidence, balls or small bumps that move, leaving some type of liquid.
It is important to make periodic visits to the gynecologist, perform ultrasounds and annual mammograms, as well as breast self-examination as measures have proven to be effective and necessary to prevent cancer.
Probability of Recovery
- In its early phase: 95%
- In the advanced phase: 2%
Although the government is seen nowhere, private organizations like ‘Pink Ribbon’ are working to create awareness among women regarding this cancer while it is also building, first of its kind, a breast cancer-related hospital in the country.
On Sunday, they have launched a nationwide social media campaign under the hashtag #SaveThe9th, which will use digital and other means to help boost knowledge among youth regarding this disease.