Successful breast checks could be in your own hands
02 October 2018
It is time that more women got to ‘know their breasts’ say medical experts as campaign groups and charities throughout the UK prepare to support Breast Awareness Month.
Figures from Cancer Research UK (CRUK) show that one in eight women in the UK will be diagnosed with breast cancer – that amounts to around 60,000 cases every year.
Increased awareness, being treated in a specialist breast unit will improve access to better surgical options, cancer outcomes and long term survival.
“Without any doubt early detection means better treatment results. That means we need to ensure that every woman knows how to carry out effective self-check procedures and, just as importantly, what to do if she thinks something is wrong,” said Anne Tansley, a Consultant Oncoplastic and Reconstructive Breast Surgeon at Spire Liverpool Hospital in Greenbank.
“We need to ensure that every woman gets to really know her breasts. If they know what feels normal they will be in a much better position to notice and changes.”
Figures from CRUK show that around 8 out of 10 women survive their disease for ten years or more, compared with 4 out of 10 back in the 1970s. Figures for surviving for five years or more are even higher at almost nine out of ten – 87%.
“These are impressive figures and shows we are making good progress,” said Anne Tansley but the hard facts are that there are still around 12,000 UK women dying of breast cancer every year.
“Although finding a lump in your breast does not always signify breast cancer it should mean that the woman acts quickly to get an early appointment with a GP to discuss the matter. They will then receive informed advice and, if necessary, be placed on the proper healthcare pathway so they will receive the necessary advice, help and treatments.”
Learn how to carry out self-checks.