Breast Cancer: Raise Awareness in October


Anthony Abrahantes

The month of October is dedicated to raising awareness to breast cancer

Daphne Renoux, Staff Writer

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and an opportunity for people to learn more about this deadly disease. Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in women all over the world; about one in eight women will develop it in their lives. Sadly, many people are still unaware of what this is exactly and how to detect it. Over the years, many treatments have been discovered to cure breast cancer and people can now find out if they are sick in a multitude of ways.

“I did not know that breast cancer was the most common form of cancer and I think that many women do not know about this type of cancer and do not get check-ups,” freshman Laura Ridoux said.

Many statistics show breast cancer is a serious and deadly disease. 42,170 women are estimated to die in 2020 due to it. Breast cancer, like any other type of cancer, is still very deadly despite all the recent innovations and medical knowledge.

Despite this, there are already five types of treatments available to help patients recover from breast cancer safely: surgery, radiation, hormone therapy, chemotherapy and targeted therapies. The most common type of treatment is surgery, which involves removing tumors and nearby margins. There are many variations of these five treatments and the decisions will mainly depend on the patient and on what type of treatment plan they choose.

It is important for women with breast cancer to know that they are not alone and informing other women about the disease is also very important.

— sophomore Cristel Cantero

Breast cancer, despite being widespread and common knowledge, is also the source of many myths, one being that “breast cancer only affects women.” That is not true at all; women are more affected by it than men but that does not exclude the possibility of a man developing the disease. In 2020, approximately 2,620 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. and approximately 520 will pass away due to it.

Another myth is that having a family member who has been diagnosed with breast cancer means someone will most likely develop it too. Having a member of the family diagnosed with this type of cancer does not necessarily put a person at risk. However, having a first-degree family member, be it a mother, sister or daughter, who was diagnosed with breast cancer below the age of 50 does put someone at higher risk than another with no history of breast cancer in their family. Still, that does not necessarily mean they will develop it.

October was designated as the official Breast Cancer Awareness Month to help educate people about this specific type of cancer and how common it is. This is a month to show support and love for those who suffer from cancer. Anybody can do their part in simple ways, such as educating themselves and others, fundraising for medical research centers or hospitals, donating to organizations that help pursue medical research on breast cancer, or volunteering at medical centers.

There is always a way to reach out to those who suffer, especially during this time of health crisis. The Coronavirus has put a barrier between researchers and answers, pausing research and slowing down that process towards new knowledge. During this month of awareness, it is important to do all that one can to help and provide support for others, to tell them they are not alone.