October is breast cancer awareness month and a new campaign will prove critical in heightening awareness and encouraging regular checking, a Fine Gael TD has said.
Fine Gael Health Spokesperson, Colm Burke, said, “According to the Irish Cancer Society, each year in Ireland, more than 3,500 women and approximately 35 men are diagnosed with breast cancer. It is more common in women over 50.”
This year’s Irish Cancer Society campaign “Care for Your Pair” is highlighting early intervention and checking yourself each month.
The Irish Cancer Society advises people to consult with their GP if they notice any of the following changes when checking:
- A lump of any size, or thickening in your breast,
- A change in the size or shape of one breast;
- A change in the skin, like puckering, or dimpling (like orange peel), or redness;
- A breast abscess (infected boil) – this may appear as a red, tender area on your breast;
- A change in the nipple shape, like a pulled-in, sunken, or flattened nipple;
- An unusual discharge (liquid) from one or both of your nipples – the discharge may be blood-stained or watery;
- A change on or around the nipple, such as a rash, or flaky or crusted skin;
- Swelling in your armpit or around your collarbone.
Deputy Burke continued, “These symptoms can be caused by other factors, but always make sure to get them checked by your GP.
“Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women in Ireland, with one in eight women diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime according to the HSE.
“I was proud to join my colleagues recently along with the Irish Cancer Society in Leinster House to promote awareness.
“Experts say there is a better chance of recovery if breast cancer is detected at the early stage. It is important to continue to monitor each month and to visit your GP if you notice any changes. The Care for Your Pair campaign is pivotal in this,” concluded Deputy Burke.