With October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the internet is routinely flooded with both helpful information and misinformation about breast cancer and its causes. Although the spread of misinformation is out of a place of helpfulness, not everything that you hear and read are true.
To clear up some of the confusion, here are a few of the top myths about breast cancer and their real counterparts:
Myth: Breast cancer only develops in middle-aged and older women.
Fact: Younger women, as well as men, can also develop breast cancer.
Myth: Using antiperspirant deodorant can cause breast cancer.
Fact: There is no evidence to support a connection between using antiperspirants and the development of breast cancer.
Myth: If I don’t have a family history of breast cancer, I won’t get it.
Fact: Although having a parent, sibling, or child who has had breast cancer increases your risk, most cases are not hereditary. Overall, only about 15% of women with breast cancer have a family history of the disease.
Myth: Wearing underwire bras cause breast cancer.
Fact: There is no supporting evidence that wearing a bra causes breast cancer. A 2014 study of about 1,500 women with breast cancer found no evidence that bra-wearing is linked to breast cancer.
Myth: Breast cancer always causes a lump in the breast/under the arm that you can feel.
Fact: It is widely believed that breast cancer always causes a lump that you can feel during a self-exam. However, that is not the case. Although self-exams are good practice, they should not be used as a substitute for routine mammograms. Breast cancer may also cause symptoms such as dimpling, discharge other than breast milk, change in shape and size of the breast, and itchy breasts. Though rarer,inflammatory breast cancer is often spotted by sudden and rapid redness, swelling, and tenderness of the breast.
It is important, and often comforting, to know everything you can about cancer when fighting it. At Kirby Medical Center, we use state-of-the-art equipment, to provide excellent services for our patients. Call (217) 762-1826 to schedule your screening mammogram.