October is an important month, as it is officially Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The article below provides important updates from the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. As we join forces and wear our pink this month, it’s important that we know how to further these advancements. Read the article below for more information on how to show alliance.
Most know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. With Community HealthNet’s Breast Cancer Awareness 5K only weeks away, I thought it important to take a look at where we are with breast cancer research, and how we can help further these advancements.
It’s common to support causes without being fully informed about how donations are being used or the progress of the research. The reasons for giving may vary. Maybe we give because we always have, we have been personally affected or know someone who is battling breast cancer. No matter the reason, we deserve to know how our gifts are impacting the cause.
So, let’s talk about breast cancer and where we are with diagnosis and treatment. With all of the publicity and events that take place during this time of year along with the funds raised, one might begin to wonder, when will we find a cure?
While a cure for breast cancer has not yet been found, I am happy to report that great strides have been made over the past few years. Here are a few significant updates according to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation:
1. We know more about how our lifestyle contributes to the development of breast cancer.
Diet, exercise, smoking (or not) are obvious contributors for a myriad of conditions including breast cancer. The healthier your lifestyle, the greater chances for prevention or successful treatment.
2. We know that breast cancer is not just one disease but several.
Research has revealed that breast cancer has several subtypes, which means the strategy for treatment may vary.
3. Greater research is available about how genetics factor into the disease.
The more we know about our family’s medical history, the better armed the doctors become when developing a plan of treatment. Ask your mother, grandmother, aunts, etc. about pre-existing conditions that “run in the family.” This information can be extremely helpful!
4. There are deeper dives into treatment options that vary from patient to patient.
The subtypes of breast cancer as mentioned above, means more laser-focused research on the treatment of each form. Continued trials over time help researchers uncover what medication, radiation, and/or chemotherapy combats the various subtypes of cancerous cells.
Without question, there is much more work to be done before a cure is discovered.