The Quill

The Student News Site of BASIS Independent Silicon Valley

The Quill

The Quill

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Previously Published Nov. 6, 2022
Breast+Cancer+Awareness+Month
In October we wear pink! People wear pink ribbons during Breast Cancer Awareness Month to show their support for people who have been affected by breast cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute, the most common type of cancer is breast cancer. Some may think that breast cancer only affects women, but the risk is also present in men, though it is significantly lower. The American Cancer Society reveals that the lifetime risk for women is about 1 in 8, while 1 in 800 men in the United States has the chance to be diagnosed with breast cancer.
 
Risks
  • Being female increases the risk
  • Increasing age also increases the risk
  • personal/ family history with breast cancer
  • Inherited mutation in BRCA1/ BRCA2
  • Any exposure to radiation
  • Getting your period at a younger age/ Starting menopause in a later stage
  • Drinking alcohol
 
Symptoms
  • A lump or a thickening in the breast that is different from the surrounding tissue
  • Changes in the breast’s size, shape, or appearance
  • An inverted nipple
  • Peeling and flaking of the pigmented skin surrounding nipple
  • Redness of the skin over the breast
Disparities
 
According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, “poverty, less education, and lack of healthcare are associated with lower breast cancer survival rates.” The lack of access to information can result in numerous undiagnosed cases. 47% of women postpone preventive services as they are unable to afford them. In the United States, the leading cause of cancer death for Latin women is breast cancer, and the death rates are 40% higher among Black women compared to white women.
Well-known Survivors
Maggie Smith
Two-time Oscar winner, Maggie Smith is well-known for her role as Professor Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter films and Violet Crawley in Downton Abbey. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008 when she was 73. She went through chemotherapy while she was filming the last Harry Potter film.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Image via theguardian.com
 
Judy Blum
Judy Blume is an American writer who is famous for her hilarious Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, which is part of the Fudge Series. Over 80 million copies of her books have been sold. Judy Blume is the author who got me into reading, and her works were a major part of my childhood. Although Blume had no family history of breast cancer, she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012 at the age of 74. Luckily, she caught it early and didn’t need chemotherapy.
Image via Getty Images
 
Hota Kotb
Hoda Kotb, a survivor, is an American broadcaster and is the main co-anchor of the NBC News morning show Today. Kotb underwent mastectomy in 2007 after her breast cancer diagnosis.
 
 
 
 
 
Image via ew.com
 
Robin Roberts
 
Robin Roberts, who survived breast cancer, is an American broadcaster and is the anchor of ABC’s Good Morning America. She was also the first woman of color to host the game show Jeopardy! Roberts was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007 after finding a lump during a self-exam, highlighting the importance of breast cancer education. Roberts was diagnosed with Triple-Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC), which disproportionately affects black women and women with the BRCA1 mutation. According to the American Cancer Society, TNBC tends to grow faster than other types of invasive breast cancer and has fewer treatment options.
Image via rocknrobin.tv
 
Breast cancer is a terrible ordeal to go through, especially because many survivors feel shame after invasive surgeries. Societal expectations regarding the physical beauty of women have led to the subject matter of breast cancer to be avoided; however, survivors should embrace the determination and courage that strengthened their character. Breast cancer survivors are an inspiration to our world and we should continue to support and follow their resilience.
 
References:
Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Pooja Prabakaran, Co-Editor-in-Chief
Aditi Singasani, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Comments (0)

All The Quill Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *