WEEKEND WEB: Early detection and treatment of breast cancer is key to survival

Mobile breast screening unit

Our weekly health column features Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

South Lincolnshire CCG is supporting Breast Cancer Awareness Month, October, in a bid to raise awareness about the importance of screening and early detection of breast cancer.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK, one person is diagnosed every 10 minutes and 1-in-8 women in the UK will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.

This Breast Cancer Awareness Month around 5,000 people will be diagnosed.

A further 5,500 additional women are diagnosed with an earlier (non-invasive) form of breast cancer, called in situ breast carcinoma.

These are confined to a specific area of the breast (usually milk ducts) but may later develop the ability to spread.

The risk of developing breast cancer increases with age. The good news is that most women will survive breast cancer if it is detected and treated early.

Breast screening provides early detection in women who appear well and do not have any symptoms of the disease. Additionally, around 350 men are diagnosed with breast cancer every year in the UK.

More women than ever are surviving breast cancer thanks to better awareness, better screening and better treatments.

An estimated five-out-of six women diagnosed with breast cancer in England and Wales survive for at least five years. However, nearly 1,000 UK women still die of breast cancer every month.

Currently, women aged 50-70 who are registered with a GP are automatically invited for breast screening every three years.

In England, the NHS has extended this age range, so women aged 47 to 73 are to be invited for screening.

Women under the age of 47 will not be offered routine screening unless they have been identified as being higher risk – for example, because of their family history.

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