Breast Cancer

I have experienced the loss of two people in my life to breast cancer. My Aunt Jean who was by all accounts a lovely woman and Ursula Candasamy. She was a close personal friend who I regarded as family and who started the not for profit Heaven’s Missing Angels here in South Africa.


The symptoms for breast cancer are as follows: there is a lump in the breast, a bloody discharge from the nipple, changes in the shape or texture of the nipple or breast.


You can have no symptoms but people may also experience discomfort, having an inverted nipple, lumps or nipple discharge. Redness and swollen lymph nodes are also a common occurrence.


Breast cancer is a cancer that forms in the cells of the breast.


After skin cancer, breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer diagnosed in women in the United States. Breast cancer can occur in both men and women but it occurs more often in women.


Statistics show that there are well over 11, 500 women and 85 men die each year from breast cancer in the United Kingdom. That is nearly 1 000deaths each month, 31 each day or one every 45 minutes.


The major causes of death from breast cancer are pulmonary insufficiency (26%), infection (24%), cardiac disease (15%), hepatic insufficiency (14%), hemorrhage (9%), central nervous system disease (9%) and hypercalcemia (3%). This is a sobering thought.


The most common cause of death from this particular cancer is metastic disease to various organs. This accounts for 42% of all deaths.


Overall, Black women are more likely to die of breast cancer. For Asian, Hispanic and Native-American women the chances of developing and the risk of dying from breast cancer is lower.


If you ignore breast cancer the following would happen. It can become a fatal disease. It never goes away completely or on its own. It is a ruthless and determined disease. You should get immediate and appropriate treatment as soon as possible and conduct regular self-examinations at home.


Stage 4 breast cancer, also called mestastic breast cancer, is the most advanced stage. This type of cancer is no longer curable nor can it go into remission because it has spread beyond the breast and may affect vital organs such as the lungs and the brain.


To lose someone, a friend, loved one or colleague from the workplace that you knew in passing perhaps is a very traumatic and challenging experience to say the least. As in my case you are always thinking that you are the one left behind.


The treatments for breast cancer are the following and can largely depend on the stages and can include surgery, medical procedures and medications.


With surgery comes mammoplasty, tissue expansion, lymph node dissection, lumpectomy and mastectomy. With medical procedures teletherapy and radiation therapy can occur and with medications an estrogen modulator, chemotherapy, hormone based chemotherapy and Bone health are involved to a greater or lesser extent.


There are varying conditions that can take place with this cancer such as fibrocystic cancer. This is a type of breast cancer where non-cancerous changes give the breast a lumpy or ropelike texture.


The lymph nodes under your arm, inside your breast, and near your collarbone are the first places breast cancer can spread. It is “metastatic” if it spreads beyond these small glands to other parts of your body.


Breast cancer can spread to any bone, but most often to the ribs, spine, pelvis or the long bones in the arms or legs.


The most serious and dangerous breast cancers are the metastatic cancers.


The easiest breast cancer to treat is usually the cancer which occurs in stage 1 cancer.


Know that if you are affected by this dread disease you are not alone nor are you the only one affected in this world who has to go through some of the aspects of this disease mentioned and discussed here.

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