5 Breast Cancer Myths

May 18, 2009 8:51:45 AM PDT
According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States other than skin cancer. It is the second leading cause of cancer death in women. About 182,000 women were projected to be diagnosed with the cancer in 2008. The chance of a woman having invasive breast cancer sometime during her life is about 1 in 8. The chance of dying from breast cancer is about 1 in 35. Breast cancer death rates are going down. Experts believe this is probably the result of finding the cancer earlier and improvements in treatment. Get an idea of what your personal risk for breast cancer is: www.cancer.gov/bcrisktool

MYTHS: There are many myths about breast cancer. Some of these include:

Finding a lump means you have breast cancer -- Research shows eight out of 10 breast lumps are benign. Women often stay away from medical care because they fear what they might find. However, doctors strongly recommend making an appointment to make sure the lump is not cancerous (Source: www.nationalbreastcancer.org).

Men do not get breast cancer -- Each year, about 1,700 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and about 450 will die. While the percentage is still small, experts say men should also perform regular breast self-exams and report any changes to their physicians (Source: www.nationalbreastcancer.org).

A mammogram can cause breast cancer to spread -- A mammogram, or X-ray, of the breast is one of the best tools currently available for the early detection of breast cancer. Research shows it cannot cause cancer to spread (Source: www.nationalbreastcancer.org).

Breast cancer is contagious -- You cannot catch breast cancer or transfer it to someone else's body. Breast cancer is the result of uncontrolled cell growth in your own body (Source: www.nationalbreastcancer.org). Breastfeeding increases the risk of breast cancer -- The opposite is actually true. Breastfeeding may decrease the risk of perimenopausal breast cancer (Source: Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation).

Breast implants increase the risk of breast cancer -- Women with breast implants are at no greater risk of getting breast cancer, according to research. However, standard mammograms don't always work as well on these women, so additional X-rays are sometimes needed to better examine breast tissue (Source: www.health.com).

? For More Information, Contact:

Diana Guayara, Media Coordinator
Coral Springs Medical Center
Coral Springs, FL
(954) 344-3329
dguayara@browardhealth.org


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