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Women’s Health | Breast Cancer EVALUATING


Breast cancer is the commonest cancer in the UK. The earlier it is caught the better your chances of full remission. We off er guidance on how to self- check your breasts at home.


I


Breast Cancer Concerns


n the UK it is estimated that approximately 12,000 women and 80 men die from breast cancer each year. That over 80


percent of women with breast cancer now live for fi ve years after the initial diagnosis supports the fact that the best procedures to combat this type of cancer are prevention and early detection.


Why Prevention is Best ‘Checking your own breasts


regularly is of vital importance, because early diagnosis gives the best chance of successful treatment,’ says Professor Gareth Evans,


celebrityangels.co.uk


Consultant in Cancer Genetics at The Christie Clinic, Manchester. The biggest asset in the push for


prevention, alongside self-checking, is breast screening. Currently all women aged between the ages of 47–73 are invited for breast screening every three years as part of the NHS Breast Screening Programme. Some women even opt to undergo


preventative treatments for breast cancer if they are genetically predisposed to being at higher risk of the disease. Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie famously underwent a double mastectomy in 2013 as a preventative measure against 


Step 1: Look in the mirror with an upright posture and place your hands on your hips. Then look for any abnormalities, such as dimpling in your breasts, bulging skin, a nipple that has changed position or is now pushed inward. Also look out for redness, soreness, a rash or swelling. Step 2: Next, raise your arms above your head and look for the aforementioned changes. Step 3: Look for any fl uids excreting from your nipples— such as watery, milky or yellow fl uid and blood. Step 4: Lie down and put your hands on your breasts. Keep your fi ngers fl at together and take your right hand and fi rmly begin to press against your left breast in a circular motion. Go from side to side to ensure that you are covering your entire breast. Begin at the nipple and move outward to ensure that you are getting the entire area. When checking the skin and tissue underneath it, use a light pressure. When checking the tissue in the middle of your breasts use a medium pressure and for the deep tissue in the back of your breasts use a deeper pressure that allows you to feel your ribcage. Step 5: Check your other breast by repeating the steps with your left hand and your right breast.


DR CHRIS’S HOME BREAST EXAM


DEAR DOCTOR WITH DR CHRIS STEELE 109


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