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HOUSE OF THE WEEK

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Information Centres To fight Breast Cancer


Those of a certain age remember what a diagnosis of breast cancer meant in the not so distant past.
While a diagnosis today is still deeply traumatic, patients know their chances to survive and thrive after treatment have dramatically improved.
In October our nation focuses on breast cancer awareness, the importance of which cannot be underestimated. The more women and men know about breast cancer the more they can do to catch it early and choose a proper course of treatment and recovery.
The importance of early detection cannot be overstated. The sooner the illness is identified the less chance it has to spread and the more treatment options are available.
During this month of awareness we urge women to honestly assess whether they know how to do a proper self-exam and, if they don't, to ask a health professional.
While self-exams are important, mammograms are essential to the early detection of breast cancer. Women 40 and over should have a mammogram each year and clinical exams also begin at the age of 40. For younger women without obvious risk factors a clinical exam can be done every two or three years.
Because these screenings are so important New Hampshire offers free screenings for women who are uninsured or under insured. Women can learn more about free screenings by calling the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services at (1-800) 852-3345.
If doctors diagnose breast cancer there are a wide range of surgical options depending on the stage of the cancer and, if a radical mastectomy is needed, the law requires insurance companies to pay for breast reconstruction, which can be done using implants or a woman's own tissue.
Each year the drugs used for chemotherapy become more effective and the brutal nausea that accompanies these treatments can be better controlled by new antiemetics.
Increasingly women with a family history of breast cancer are turning to genetic screenings which can help them understand their risks and better prepare for the future.
Just as medicine has evolved to better fight breast cancer, our society has matured greatly in our understanding of what patients and their families need during this time of crisis. We participate in sponsored walks and runs and proudly display our pink ribbons. It has been amazing to watch giant men brutally blocking and tackling each other on the football field each Sunday wearing pink sneakers.
Century Fox Reports: Tips To avoid Breast Cancer
Patients and their families can choose to keep to themselves if that's what works best for them, but if they want to speak with others facing the same daunting challenges then our hospitals and other health care institutions have organized support groups for every need on every schedule.
Learn more at upcoming events:
On Wednesday, Oct. 10, Wentworth-Douglass Hospital hosts "Cancer Genetics, The ABCs," at 5:30 p.m. For more information call (603) 609-6120
On Saturday, Oct. 13, you can attend the Seacoast Wellness Fair, our Journey to Healthy Living at Community Campus, off West Road, Portsmouth. Activities include: First Aid and CPR (non-certificate) training; exercise demonstrations and activities focusing on skills as diverse as jump roping, yoga, wall climbing; free screenings; programs on healthy cooking and eating. For information, visit communitychildcarenh.org, portsmouthhospital.org, or ffsh.org.
On Wednesday, Oct. 17, Portsmouth Regional Hospital is hosting a "Breast Health Awareness Month Mammography Party," 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. For more information call (603) 433-5191.
On Sunday, Oct. 21, the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Walk in Exeter steps off at 9 a.m. for more information call (603) 471-4104.
When it comes to breast cancer, awareness is power. We urge all on the Seacoast to take some time this October to raise their breast cancer IQ.
EXPLORE: Lifestyle      Heart Disease       Breast Cancer  


Edited By Cen Fox Post Team
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