October is “Breast Cancer Awareness Month” and an Iowa woman who has survived the disease three times says women need to protect themselves. Lynette Richey of Altoona says the approach you take depends on your age. She says women under 40 should do self breast examinations, as that’s how she caught the disease. Richey says if you find something, talk to your doctor.
If you are over 40, she says you should get a mammogram each year. Richey says early detection is important. If you find the cancer early, before it spreads outside the breast, you have a 98% survival rate for five years. Richey says there are other things you can do overall to prevent cancer.
Richey says you should maintain a healthy body weight, engage in physical activity, and reduce your alcohol consumption. She says any woman can get cancer, even if you don’t have a family history of the disease. Richey says there is plenty of help available. She says you can find a support group for you or someone you know by calling the American Cancer Society at 800-227-2345, or talk to your doctor.
You can also find information on-line at: www.cancer.org.