By the National Cancer Institute
BETHESDA, Md., Oct. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- October marks National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Is there cause for celebration? For many reasons, the answer is a resounding "yes." Since 1990, the rate of death from breast cancer has been dropping. Research—much of it funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI)—has improved our understanding of breast cancer and produced more effective treatments.
Yet nearly 27,000 African American women were expected to be diagnosed last year with breast cancer, the most common cancer among this group. And although African American women are less likely than white women to be diagnosed with breast cancer, those African American women who do develop the disease are more likely to die from it than women of any other racial or ethnic group in the United States. Part of the reason is that they are more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, when cancer has spread beyond the breast—and when it is more difficult to treat.
The good news is that there is power in information. Get the facts. And, as always, talk with your health care provider about your concerns.
Here's what you need to know about breast cancer:
NCI leads the National Cancer Program and the NIH effort to dramatically reduce the burden of cancer and improve the lives of cancer patients and their families, through research into prevention and cancer biology, the development of new interventions, and the training and mentoring of new researchers. For more information about cancer, please visit the NCI web site at www.cancer.gov or call NCI's Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237). More articles and videos in the culturally relevant Lifelines series are available at www.cancer.gov/lifelines.
SOURCE National Cancer Institute