To fight against breast cancer the most useful tool is early diagnosis. In Mexico every year they die for this disease four thousand 300 women, that is, one death every two hours. It is the second reason for mortality.
Despite the fact that in recent years, science has made enormous progress in identifying the factors that influence the start and progression of breast cancer , the recommendation remains the same: early detection is essential, which can be achieved through mammography .
To do this, mammography is performed, a study that is defined as an image of the breasts that is obtained through a simple X-ray procedure, comments in interview José Luis Juárez Hidalgo, chief of Imaging at Hospital Angeles Clínica Londres .
The mammography It has the potential to show abnormal growths of the breast tissue (both benign and malignant) two years before they are clinically palpable. But the most important thing is that they can be detected when they are very small and, therefore, easy to treat.
Through this study you can detect:
The specialist points out that "self-exploration should be done since the mammary glands reach their full development, that is, between 16 and 18 years of age. Women under 35 years can practice a breast ultrasound, since the characteristics of that tissue (which is subject to hormonal changes) allow a good diagnosis.
And he adds: "If any alteration during ultrasound, it is convenient to perform a mammography; at present, breast cancer has changed its behavior, now it is more aggressive and occurs in much younger women ".
Likewise, a clinical examination of the breasts is recommended every 2 or 3 years, starting at age 20, and annually reaching the age of 35. It is a simple visual and manual review of the breasts performed by the doctor. Through this test we seek to detect any alteration that has gone unnoticed by self-exploration.
For the women over 35 years , emphasizes the expert, the best way to prevent breast cancer is through mammography, which must be performed annually. "Because the causes are not yet well established, it can not be prevented. We can not know who can suffer it. "
For the realization of this exam, the ideal thing is to go to an accredited hospital. The study requires a great quality control, from start to finish, to have a good diagnosis. "
At Hospital Angeles Clinic London, a modern masthograph is used, which "performs a compression, automatically, that completely stretches the breast tissue and exposes it in such a way that it can be studied in a panoramic way," says Dr. Juarez .
A special feature of this masthograph is that it has tilting technology, which allows high quality projections in people sitting (wheelchair) or lying down.
It is a painless and ambulatory study, which takes between 15 and 20 minutes. Although low radiation techniques are used it does not affect fertility, it does not produce abnormal growth of other tissue, and most importantly: it can save your life.
Self-exploration is basic in the detection of breast cancer . The purpose is to detect nodules or abnormal discharge of fluid from the nipple. It is important to perform after menstruation (preferably on the seventh day), in a comfortable place; for example, lying down or during the shower. In the stages of menopause and lactation, it must be done on the same day of each month.
Besides the self-exploration palpable, the most appropriate way to observe a change in the breasts, is to stand in front of a mirror with arms down both sides of the body and verify the symmetry of the breasts, the appearance of the skin and look for red areas or lumps.
The expert emphasizes that it is very important that women go to a specialist if they detect any alteration, because many delay their attention for fear of being diagnosed with cancer.
It should be noted that not all the nodules detected in the mammary gland are cancer, but unfortunately the fear that some women show to suffer from this disease causes them not to go to the doctor.
Another aspect to take into account is that, because most of the information on this subject is dedicated to female breast cancer, this condition is unknown to many men, but they can also suffer from it. By not knowing their risks, they receive a late diagnosis, reducing the possibilities of an effective treatment.
To conclude, Juárez Hidalgo says that it is necessary to raise awareness in the population that early prevention of breast cancer mortality decreases due to this condition. "It is the only way. You have to do the mammography. "