Fact: Almost 19,000 Canadian women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 1999. About 5,400 will die of the disease.
Fact: On average, 15 Canadian women die every day from breast cancer.
Fact: In 1999, the most frequently diagnosed cancer for women will be breast cancer.
Throughout October, Canadian Cancer Society volunteers will urge women to get the facts about breast cancer.
“We encourage women to talk to their doctors about screening for breast cancer because we know that screening saves lives,” says Christine Kincaid, president of the Carleton Unit of the Canadian Cancer Society.
“Statistics show that breast cancer death rates have dropped by about 10 percent since 1986. This decrease is partly due to the fact that more women are having mammograms and more tumours are being found at an earlier stage. When tumours are found early, more women survive this disease.”
The society recommends all Canadian women between 50 and 69 years have a mammogram every two years together with a physical examination of the breasts by a trained health professional. These procedures together lead to earlier diagnosis of breast cancer and a significant improvement in survival. Women of any age with known risk factors should see their doctor regularly.
The society also recommends that by 40 years of age, all women practice breast self-examination regularly at the same time each month, and continue this practice after menopause.
For information on breast cancer, its treatment, prevention and support services, especially the Reach to Recovery program, call the Canadian Cancer Society's Information Service at 1-888-939-3333 or the local Ottawa office at 723-1744.