What is breast cancer?

 
Breast cancer develops when some of the cells start to divide in an uncontrolled way; at the beginning, the process takes place in the mammary gland only, but as time goes by, it can spread to the neighbouring lymph nodes and other tissues in the body.

Survival after five years is currently 87%.

If the tumour is identified in the very early stages (and this is why check-ups are so important, to obtain early diagnosis) and properly treated, survival can reach 98%.
Professor Umberto Veronesi is confident that we can (and must) reach zero mortality.

This is why prevention is essential. There are two types of prevention: primary and secondary.
It concerns all women, although 75% of mammary cancers affect women over the age of 50.


pink-is-good-page-14Primary prevention

Primary prevention regards the way we live, eat and exercise, as well as the environment around us.
Everything known now as “life style” can have a good or a bad influence on our health, including breast cancer.

Specific prevention of this disease recommends:
 

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PHYSICAL EXERCISE
At least 30 minutes of movement every day.
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DIET
It is preferable to reduce the consumption of red meat and animal fats, replacing them with foods that protect us against breast cancer. These include pulses, forest fruits, wholemeal cereals, soya and by-products, all of which contain plant oestrogens. Leafy greens, both raw and cooked, like spinach, chicory, chard and lettuce, regulate the hormones and help prevent the formation of cancer.
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NO SMOKING
Cigarettes aren’t just bad for our lungs. Several studies indicate that smoking is linked to an increased risk of breast cancer. So smoking tobacco should be avoided.
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MODERATE CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL
Recent studies prove that even modest consumption of alcoholic beverages can increase, albeit slightly, the risk of breast cancer both pre and post menopause. It’s best to drink as little as possible.

pink-is-good-page-15Secondary prevention

Early diagnosis is essential to prevention: this means having regular check-ups, depending on age and personal history.

BETWEEN THE AGES OF 25 AND 40
Self-examination of the breast (three days after your period).
At least one professional breast examination and mammary ultrasound scan, gynaecological check-up with at least one vaginal ultrasound scan, to be repeated at the discretion of the doctor.
Smear test and HPV DNA test for the prevention of cervical cancer (every 2-3 years).

BETWEEN THE AGES OF 40 AND 50
Self-examination of the breast (2-3 days after every period).
Professional breast examination, mammogram and mammary ultrasound scan, gynaecological check-up with vaginal ultrasound scan (every 1-2 years).
Smear test and HPV DNA test for the prevention of cervical cancer (every 2-3 years).

OVER THE AGE OF 50
Self-examination of the breast (at least once a month).
Professional breast examination, mammogram and mammary ultrasound scan, gynaecological check-up with vaginal ultrasound scan (every year).
Smear test and HPV DNA test for the prevention of cervical cancer (every 2-3 years).


Watch the videos

Breast cancer: the situation

Diet and life styles

Sport and prevention

Secondary prevention


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For more information:
www.pinkisgood.it