Why Breast Cancer Awareness is Important for Both Women and Men

Oct 13, 2021

Dear fellow community members and colleagues,

Each October, during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the world turns pink. This international campaign is extremely important – and effective – in increasing awareness of the disease among women. At Tenet Health Central Coast, we are doing our part this month, stressing that early detection is key, and spreading the word that mammograms are the most effective form of early detection in women.

That being said, we cannot overlook men, who are not exempt from this disease. According to the CDC, about 1 out of every 100 breast cancers diagnosed in the United States is found in a man.

Many of the symptoms in both men and women are the same:

  • A lump or swelling in the breast
  • Redness or flaky skin in the breast
  • Irritation or dimpling of breast skin
  • Nipple discharge
  • Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area

Whether you are a man or woman, if you have any signs or symptoms that worry you, you should see your doctor right away.

Although there are breast cancer risk factors that you have no control over – such as age, genetic mutation, and family history of cancer – there are some risk factors you can change. Both women and men can lower their risk of getting breast cancer by maintaining a healthy diet and weight and exercising regularly. In fact, a better quality of life helps strengthen your immune system, which decreases the risk of a number of diseases, not just breast cancer.

It's easy to get checked with a mammogram. Just ask your primary care provider for a referral or make an appointment directly at Selma Carlson Diagnostic Center or Templeton Imaging. Both offer extended Saturday hours this month for your convenience and can provide 3D mammography and ultrasound imaging.

In these times, we need to take care of ourselves because other health issues don’t stop for a pandemic. Please make it a point to make time for your mammogram as your doctor advises.

Warmly,

Mark Lisa
Chief Executive Officer
Tenet Health Central Coast