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Breast cancer awareness can save lives

By Ben Stopka
On October 19, 2016

America recognizes “Breast Cancer Awareness” each October. This recognition was started to support all those who are affected by the terrible disease, which has sadly become very common.

According to breastcancer.org, “About 1 in 8 women (about12%) will be develop invasive breast cancer over the course of their lifetime…a man’s lifetime risk of breast cancer is about 1 in 1000…For women in the U.S., breast cancer death rates are higher than those for any other cancer, besides lung cancer…About 40,450 women in the U.S. are expected to die in 2016 from breast cancer, though death rates have been decreasing since 1989.”

Referring to cancerresearch.org, “​When diagnosed early, breast cancer treatment generally involves surgery, which, depending on the stage and molecular characteristics of the cancer, may be followed by chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or targeted therapy (including hormone therapy).”

A whole month is devoted to this, and it’s evident why. Sarah Bran, a Liberal Arts major, said “I think that Breast Cancer Awareness Month is important because I know a lot of people who are impacted by it and I think that if you don’t know anyone who is affected by it then you kind of forget how big a problem it is.”

Alluding back to breastcancer.org, “​Often there are no outward signs of breast cancer that you can see or feel. If there are outward signs, the more common ones include a lump, an area of thickening, or a dimple in the breast. Less common signs include breast swelling and redness or an enlarged underarm lymph node.” Remember, these signs aren’t definitive, and it doesn’t mean a person has breast cancer if they have this.

The simple act of wearing pink during the month of October can help, but for those who would like to do more, there are other things to do. Mount Mercy University holds an “Especially for You” race each October and this year was “the third largest turnout” according to mercycare.org with “15,560 people registered and $481,000 donated.”

Donations are accepted throughout the year and all proceeds submitted to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation or the American Cancer Society will go directly to those suffering to help with current treatments and researching new forms of treatments. The greatest gift one can give though, is personal support. Spread the love and wear pink.

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