The most common symptom of breast cancer is the presence of a lump in the breast. It tends to be painless, hard and irregular, and the most effective way to detect it is breast self-examination.
The gynecologist Karin Rubio, from Clínica Vida, accredited to Mato Grosso Saúde, takes advantage of the October Pink campaign to remember that women should take care not only during this month, but throughout the year.
“Breast self-examination is a simple technique that makes a difference in your life. The body is yours, you will feel the symptoms first, so the warning sign is important to come from you. It is necessary to know yourself, lose fear, shame and touch to avoid this evil ”, reinforces Karin Rubio.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 1.38 million new cases of the disease and 458 thousand deaths per year. Data from the Brazilian Society of Mastology indicate that one in 12 women will develop breast cancer by the age of 90.
Karim Rubio comments that the shock of patients when receiving the diagnosis is noticeable. “Being diagnosed with breast cancer is scary and you can see it in the eyes of women when we deliver the positive result”, says the doctor.
According to the gynecologist, each patient finds ways to deal with, demonstrate or hide their pain. “It is a cruel disease that directly affects the symbols of being a woman. Affected women can have many losses, from breast, hair, fertility and libido. The disease has its collateral side, it affects friendships, loves, the family, in short ”, he highlights.
According to the National Cancer Institute (Inca), there are several types of breast cancer and there are measures that contribute to disease prevention. According to the entity, protective behavior: healthy eating, regular physical activity, avoiding alcoholic beverages and maintaining an adequate weight, are able to prevent 28% of all cases of the disease.
“For the year 2020, 66,280 new cases were estimated (in Brazil), which represents an incidence rate of 43.74 cases per 100,000 women. It is also important to highlight that, although rare, breast cancer also affects men ”, warns Karin.
When breast cancer develops, Rubio explains that the tumor has its own characteristics and in each patient it can evolve in different ways. The most common symptom is the lump. Other signs of breast cancer are cutaneous edema similar to orange peel, skin retraction, pain, nipple inversion, hyperemia, desquamation or ulceration of the nipple and papillary secretion, especially when it is unilateral and spontaneous.
“The secretion associated with cancer is usually transparent and may be pink or red due to the presence of red blood cells. Palpable lymph nodes may also appear in the armpit ”.
The doctor points out that when excluding non-melanoma skin tumors, breast cancer is the most prevalent in women in all regions of the country. In 2018, 17,763 people died of breast cancer in Brazil, of which 17,763 were women and 189 men, according to the Ministry of Health’s Mortality Atlas, reaching a rate of 13.84 deaths / 100,000.