Deaths from Breast cancer in India is predicted to increase to 76,000 year on by 2020 with an average age of incidence shifting to 30 years from 50 years. Very disturbing facts. The age adjusted incidence rate of Breast cancer was found as high as 41 per 100,000 women in Delhi, 37.9 in Chennai, 34.4 in Bangalore and 33.7 in Thiruvananthapuram.
High time we move from disease care to preventive care. This can be done by increasing disease awareness, initiating population-based breast cancer screening programs and making breast screening available at more hospitals and healthcare centres at less cost. Through breast surveillance, cancers can be detected early when they are small and have not spread to lymph nodes making breast conservation possible as well causing reduction in mortality from breast cancer.
First understand the Risk factors:
- Compared to married women, single women showed 4–5-fold higher risk for developing breast cancer in the age group of 40–54 and above
- Nulliparous women (woman who has never given birth) have a 2.2-fold higher risk than parous women
- Having one or more first-degree relatives (mother, sisters) who have had breast cancer increases a woman’s chances of developing this disease
- BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations having been identified as the major genetic cause
- The risk of developing breast cancer increases with age
- Overweight women are at a higher risk of developing breast cancer
- High breast cancer incidence have been reported in Parsi community (consanguineous marriages, late age of marriage and childbirth)
- Women who have had breast biopsies have an increased risk of breast cancer
- Women who have high breast density have an increased risk of breast cancer
- Women who have received radiation therpay to chest wall for any cause have an increased risk of breast cancer
How to detect breast cancer early on: