White women 40 and older have traditionally had the highest rates of breast cancer in the United States, but rising rates among blacks have narrowed the gap in recent years, according to a new American Cancer Society report.
“This convergence of rates is being driven by steady rates among white women and a slow increase in recent years among African-American women,” said report co-author Carol DeSantis, an epidemiologist in the society’s Surveillance and Health Services Research Group.
From 2006 through 2010, breast cancer rates increased 0.2 percent among black women but remained stable among whites, researchers found. Read More…
Breast awareness and breast self-exam
Women should be aware of how their breasts normally feel and report any changes to their doctor right away. Finding a change does not mean that you have cancer.
By being aware of how your own breasts feel, you are likely to notice any changes that take place. You can also choose to use a step-by-step approach to checking your breasts on a set schedule. The best time to do breast self-examination (BSE) is when your breasts are not tender or swollen. If you find any changes, see your doctor right away.
Symptoms of breast cancer
While the widespread use of screening mammography has increased the number of breast cancers found before they cause any symptoms, some are still missed.
The most common sign of breast cancer is:
- A new lump or mass
- A lump that is painless, hard, and has uneven edges (but some cancers are tender, soft, and rounded)
My aunt had a benign mass in her chest — scared the life out of me. I’ve never thought my family was immune, just because we’ve never had a history of, thus I count my many blessings everyday. – Sab