Awareness about breast cancer  

Breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer in women and generally the second most common cancer globally, with approximately 1.4 million cases diagnosed annually [1]. In 2018, worldwide, there were 2.1 million incident cases of breast cancer diagnosed (making it the second most common cancer overall after lung cancer), accounting for nearly 12% of all incident cancer cases. An estimated 627,000 deaths were expected to occur globally [2, 3].

Generally, the incidence of breast cancer is higher in developed countries compared to developing countries. This difference may be attributed to certain lifestyles and reproductive factors that are more common in the developed world. However, this disparity may be amplified due to relatively low awareness, screening practices, and diagnoses in developing countries, even though the rates of breast cancer are rapidly increasing in many developing nations.

Regular alcohol consumption increases the risk of breast cancer, and the risk further escalates with higher levels of alcohol intake. National health guidelines in the UK recommend that women should not consume more than 14 units of alcohol per week, which is equivalent to seven 175ml glasses of wine or seven pints of lower-strength beer. After menopause, the risk of breast cancer rises if one is overweight or obese, and the risk increases with greater weight gain over a lifetime. Several recent studies suggest that smoking may slightly increase the likelihood of developing breast cancer, although further research is needed for conclusive evidence. There is also some evidence indicating that starting smoking at a younger age, particularly before having children, may elevate the risk of breast cancer. Additionally, the risk may be higher with increased smoking frequency.



ePaper - Nawaiwaqt