Saturday, July 13, 2024

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Breast Cancer; Awareness Month

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Nowadays, October is known as breast cancer awareness month almost worldwide. The foundation of this organization was laid in the United States in 1985 to raise people’s awareness about breast cancer. Later, in 2004, October was declared breast cancer awareness month by the World Health Organization.

The survival rate for breast cancer has increased significantly with early diagnosis and treatment. For this reason, it is recommended that every woman have a breast examination and breast screening every year. It is recommended that people with a history of breast, ovarian, or uterine cancer, especially on their mother’s side, be more sensitive about this issue.

Breast examination can easily be performed by the person herself every month. Breast imaging once a year is sufficient. Although it may vary in each country, ultrasound is generally sufficient for people under the age of 40, while mammography and ultrasound are recommended for people aged 40 and over. It is very important to have your breast screening before planned pregnancies; because changes in breast tissue due to pregnancy and breastfeeding may delay the diagnosis of breast cancer. Another difficulty in being diagnosed with breast cancer during pregnancy or breastfeeding is that chemotherapy cannot be received during the first 3 months of pregnancy and breastfeeding, as it affects the development of the baby. Radiotherapy can be received during breastfeeding; However, radiotherapy applications may hurt milk quality and quantity. Egg-freezing methods may be considered for people with a family history of breast cancer or suspected of having breast cancer during routine checkups to preserve fertility after treatment.

When you are diagnosed with breast cancer, genetic tests can be performed with the guidance of your doctor to calculate the risk of future generations and various precautions can be taken according to the risk rate. BRCA mutation is known to many women today. After completing pregnancy and breastfeeding, BRCA-positive patients request breast tissue removal (mastectomy) and simultaneous breast reconstruction to protect themselves from breast cancer.

Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial for breast cancer. Partial or complete removal of breast tissue may vary depending on the type of cancer, its spread, and existing risk factors; However, it is often possible to replace a missing tissue with the principles of plastic surgery.

Have you had your breast screening this year?

Dr. Isil Akgun Demir

Instagram: dr.isilakgundemir

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