The Pink Month

It’s the month commemorated to breast cancer awareness

Breast cancer continues to claim its spot as the most common form of cancer affecting Malaysian women. This goes to show that much awareness is still needed in our community and on top of that, it’s vital for everyone in our community to have a better understanding of breast cancer.

Understanding the disease can help individuals take proactive action to manage and fight breast cancer by seeking for treatment as early as possible.

Did you know? In high-income countries, 9 out of 10 breast cancer patients survive 10 years whereas in Malaysia, the average statistic is 5 out of 10. Late detection and poor access to treatment were the reasons believed behind this statistic.

Moving forward, in the hopes of shedding more light on breast cancer, here are some facts about the disease.

8 out of 10 breast lumps are non-cancerous but it’s always better to be sure by having your breasts checked if a lump has been identified.

Symptoms of breast cancer include:

Dimpled skin on the breast
Unusual nipple discharge
Redness or flaky skin around the breast
Inverted nipple
Lumps in the breast or underarm

As most breast cancers are sensitive to estrogen, soy (its natural chemicals have a similar structure to estrogen) was believed to increase one’s risk of breast cancer. This is a myth.

According to the Breast Cancer Foundation in Malaysia, Chinese women have the highest risk of developing breast cancer, followed Indian and Malay women.

99 percent of individuals who receive treatment for breast cancer at an early stage live at least 5 years longer after their diagnosis.

Having a family history of breast cancer does not mean that you will be diagnosed with it too. Only 10% of those diagnosed with breast cancer have family history of breast cancer.

Breast cancer does not only affect women, men too are at risk.

40 percent of newly diagnosed breast cancer cases in Malaysia have already progressed to the advanced stage.

Routine breast self-examination can help you to understand your breasts better. This way, you will be able to detect any abnormalities and consult your doctor immediately. Here’s a guide on how to conduct one.