Understanding Breast Cancer and Early Detection in Australia
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australian women, with nine out of ten women who are diagnosed having no family history of breast cancer. As a woman’s risk of breast cancer increases greatly after the age of 50, it is important to understand the importance and benefits of breast screening and early detection.
What is Breast Screening?
Breast screening is an X-ray test that can detect changes in the breasts long before a woman or her doctor feel or see them. The test helps medical staff to identify and diagnose any abnormalities, such as lumps or tumours, which could be signs of breast cancer.
The Benefits of Early Detection
Early detection of breast cancer can mean better treatment outcomes for those affected by this disease. According to Cancer Australia, when detected early, there are more treatment options available and those affected often have a better chance of survival. This is why it’s so important for women aged between 50 and 74 to have regular screenings every two years.
Importance for Women Over 75
Women over 75 should also consider having regular screenings every two years if they are fit and well enough; however, they may need to discuss this with their Doctor first. Women over 75 should also be aware that they can still be diagnosed with breast cancer even if they do not choose to continue with regular screening tests.
It’s important for all women over the age of 50 to be aware of their risks when it comes to breast cancer, as well as how important it is for them to get screened regularly after this age. Regular screenings can find changes in the breasts early on and provide more treatment options which could help save lives. If you have any questions about your own risk factors or would like more information about breast screening, please speak with your local GP today!