BREAST CANCER IN ILLINOIS, AN OVERVIEW
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Illinois. Activities to make women more aware of this disease and the methods of early detection that can help save lives are planned for around the state.
Today, one out of every eight American women will develop breast cancer sometime during her life. More than 40,000 women in the United States will die this year from the disease; more than 2,000 of them will be from Illinois.
Realizing that there is a possibility she may develop breast cancer is a woman's first step toward taking control of her health. The facts are--
Early detection could save many of the lives lost to breast cancer each year. Currently, only about 9 percent of breast cancers in Illinois are detected at the earliest and most curable stage. The five-year survival rate for these women is approximately 96 percent. Increasing the number of women who are diagnosed at this stage by just 6 percent would save the lives of 400 Illinois women each year.
Early detection depends on women following these guidelines:
Most of the time breast changes are not cancer. Experienced health care professionals can examine the breast and determine whether additional tests are necessary to rule out cancer.
The use of mammography, clinical breast examination and breast self-examination offer women the best opportunity for reducing the breast cancer rate through early detection.
While the cause of breast cancer remains unclear, several conditions have been linked to its development.
There is no certain way to prevent breast cancer. For now, the best plan for women is to follow the guidelines for early detection as outlined above. These guidelines can help find cancers when the likelihood of successful treatment is greatest.
of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
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