Of all the cancer cases reported in women from all over the world, approximately 25 percent are linked with invasive breast cancer.
This is why drives for getting checked for breast cancer are prevalent nowadays all over the world. Various groups and organizations are even dedicated to the sole goal of informing people of the importance of having themselves checked out for signs and symptoms of the disease. Luckily, these efforts are not in vain, and a lot of folks are already taking initiative and seeing their doctors and local health workers to have a test done.
To get a diagnosis, there are various first steps or initital tests. You can do a self breast exam initially. This involves pressing your fingers around each breast in order to feel whether there are lumps in the area. Anywhere from your armpits to the area around the nipples should be covered. Any kind of abnormal skin issue (including rashes, dimpling and other unusual marks) found there can be a telltale sign of the disease, so make sure to take note of that.
Getting a clinical breast exam can also be your first step in detecting breast cancer. This usually goes with the annual physical exams most people go through. This method involves the same thing, except that your physician will do the checking for you. It will also involve other techniques and measures to fully figure out whether you have contracted the disease or not.
When irregularities are found, you will undergo more tests and screenings including mammograms, ultrasound, CAT scans, PET scans, MRI and even more. After this will you finally get a diagnosis.
Usually, a diagnosis will tell you what it is that you're dealing with. It explains what kind of issue you have and the characteristics of the cancer you have. It may also come with a prognosis, which is basically your outlook or chance of recovery from your ailment.
Getting a diagnosis may just be the first step to your battle against breast cancer, but it is also the most important. Through this, you can learn what your condition is already like. Getting diagnosed early on can also be a great thing, as you can prevent the disease from getting worse and spreading throughout the body. Simply put, early detection is a lifesaver.
A diagnosis is also the marker of the beginning of your breast cancer treatment. With your diagnosis, you and your doctor will be able to begin fighting the disease with a series of different treatment methods. However, the stage of your disease will also most likely affect the kind of treatment that will be available to you, as some are more suitable for specific conditions more than others.
Some breast cancer patients find the use of medication most suitable to them, while others will fare better with surgery or radiation. This is why it's highly important to seek a diagnosis right away if you see any of the signs of breast cancer.
If you are, however, a firm believer that prevention is better than curing, there are also ways that you can try to prevent developing breast cancer. Keeping a generally healthy lifestyle is usually the most common tip experts suggest for women to follow to avoid this ailment. Having a healthy weight, exercising, stopping smoking and drinking less alcohol tend to somewhat reduce risks according to a 2007 report. Breastfeeding is also something that could help you prevent breast cancer, according to many sources.
Some folks avoid checking themselves for lumps in their breasts just because they are scared of the possible outcome. This, of course, is not a healthy way to deal with the high possibilities of contracting breast cancer. Keep in mind that the earlier that you know about it, the better odds you have at beating it. Detecting breast cancer in its earliest stages will give you better chances of beating it, so make sure to do something right now, despite the uncertainty. Also, if you found nothing today, it may also come up later, so just keep on checking regularly, so you can monitor yourself and still be able to spot any signs immediately.