At the initiative of the World Health Organization, the International Breast Cancer Day is celebrated every 19th October, with the aim of raising awareness and encouraging more and more women to have access to appropriate controls, diagnoses and effective treatments.
Early detection in order to improve the prognosis and survival of breast cancer cases remains the cornerstone of the fight against this cancer.
The trip to the doctor
Although several campaigns encourage women to palpate the breast for the detection of a foreign bump, it is important to note that there are better alternatives for the detection of smaller tumors that may go unnoticed during the touch.
A mammogram can identify changes that can be signs of breast cancer. The doctor who interprets a mammogram will look for different types of changes in the breast, such as small white patches, lumps or tumors called masses and other suspicious areas that could be signs of the disease.
Although mammography is the ideal alternative for the detection of cancer, it is possible that this type of test will give false positives.
Thermography is a non-invasive test, does not require radiation and uses an infrared camera to measure the temperature of the skin on the mammary surface and generate an image of these. Tumors, especially breast, have a higher metabolic heat generation because the cells reproduce faster than normal tissue, with thermography such variations can be seen.
According to the institute Thermography Panama, this test is considered as a safe method, which does not generate compression, pain or radiation to the breasts.
It should be noted that both thermography and mammography function as measurement tools. The definitive diagnosis of cancer is made only through a biopsy.
Ultrasound is useful for observing some changes in the breasts, such as those that can be palpated, but which cannot be seen on a mammogram or changes in women with dense breast tissue. It can also be used to analyze a change that was seen on a mammogram. Ultrasound can be used to establish the difference between fluid-filled cysts and solid masses.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
It is important to note that an MRI is not recommended as a screening tool alone, as it may not detect some cases of cancer that the mammogram would find.
Magnetic resonance imaging of the breasts is mainly used in women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer, to help measure the size of the cancer, to identify other tumors in the breast and to detect tumors in the opposite breast.
Although MRI may find some cancers that are not seen on the mammogram, it is more likely to find something that turns out not to be cancer, or false positive. False positive findings must be verified to confirm that there is no cancer.
Prevent, Prevent, Prevent
It should be noted that some subjects are more likely than others to have this disease. That is why we have to take part of our routine, medical processes when we reach a certain age. In the case of women 40-44 years of age they have the option of starting screening with a mammogram every year. However, at age 45, it is necessary to have a mammogram every year. Once you are 55 you can switch to a mammogram every 2 years, or you can choose to continue with your mammograms annually.
Screening should continue as long as the woman is in good health and is expected to live 10 years or more.
Doctors recommend mammography as the best alternative for effective tumor detection. However, there are other ways to diagnose it.
Vitamin D can "turn on or off" genes that will then have an effect on dozens of functions, including nutrient uptake, cell proliferation and cancer growth or suppression. If you suffer from low levels of vitamin D, there is likely to be a blood trail. A simple blood test or a finger prick can measure your vitamin D levels to inform you if you are deficient.
Iodine is "food" for the endocrine system. However, certain chemical toxins block the absorption of iodine in the body. When this blockage occurs, receptors in the mammary area and in the thyroid area must "compete" for limited supplies. Lack of iodine can cause breast cancer and other cancers, as all glandular tissues depend on healthy amounts of iodine to function properly.
Methylation is a process in which hormones are metabolized and then decomposed into other vital substances. Poor methylation and hepatic clearance of the more aggressive estrogens may be a contributing factor in the development of breast cancer. Estrogen methylation can be measured by a simple urine test.
Watch your mouth
One factor that can help prevent cancer is to watch the way we feed. Inclining to choose natural alternatives and forgetting processed foods is always the best option.
Among the foods that must be frequent in our diet are legumes, which have high fiber content and some, such as lentils, work as antioxidants.
Fruits such as blueberries also function as antioxidants, in addition to having anti-inflammatory properties.
Salmon, in the area of proteins, contains essential omega-3 fatty acids that have preventative properties that are effective for breast cancer.
Food and physical activity will always make factors that help cancer prevention. However, what determines the perfect formula for a better cure will always make a visit to our doctor.