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Breast Cancer Awareness MonthPosted Oct. 1, 2012 | Denise A. Harrison and Mady Etzel
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The Kent State University Women’s Center will offer mammogram screenings to qualified Kent State employees, spouses and students on Oct. 9, 10 and 11.
Mammograms take approximately 12 minutes and will be conveniently provided in Tiffany Breast Care’s mobile mammography unit. The van will be located on the Kent Campus in front of the Women’s Center.
Participants’ health insurance will be billed or participants may choose to self-pay.
For additional information or to register, call the Women's Center at 330-672-9230, Monday through Friday, from 9-4 p.m. Registration is required by Oct. 1.
Early Detection is Key
Many women with early breast cancer have no symptoms. It is crucial to get screened before symptoms have a chance to appear. The most common sign of breast cancer is a new lump or mass.
Other signs may include:
- Swelling of all or part of the breast
- Skin irritation or dimpling
- Pain in the breast or nipple
- Thickening of the nipple or breast
- Discharge other than breast milk
Marlo Kibler, coordinator of University Benefits for Kent State University, was asymptomatic (no symptoms) and looked like the picture of health. She didn’t drink or smoke and maintained an active lifestyle.
“I had an extremely rare form of cancer that is not typically responsive to traditional treatment methods such as chemo or radiation. Only because I go to the doctor every year to get a physical exam was it found,” says Kibler. “As it turns out, the type of cancer I had is indigenous to people of color and Greek decent. It affects less than one percent of the world population.”
Kibler encourages other women to get screened and be proactive about their health.
“Today, I am cancer free due to a surgery and I have been that way for almost five years. I make sure I get every screening and test available to me during my annual physical and take a proactive approach to my healthcare.”
Black Women and Cancer
Although the overall lifetime risk of breast cancer is lower for black women compared with white women, the death rates are higher. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among black women, and in 2010, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported that breast cancer was the leading cause of cancer death for black women aged 45-64 years. What was most alarming in this CDC report was that the breast cancer death rate for women aged 45--64 years was 60 percent higher for black women than white women. (CDC: National Vital Statistics System: www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss.htm).
Visit the App Store to download the free early detection plan (EDP) app that helps women remember to do their monthly self-exam and to schedule their yearly mammogram.
For more information about the Women’s Center, visit www.kent.edu/womenscenter.