A Very Important 1%: When the Men in our Lives Get Breast Cancer
A recent article in the New York Times caught our eye – and maybe yours too.
Those who know us recognize that we are passionate about women’s health and issues related to breast cancer. Our primary focus in our mammography blog is women’s breast health. But we know that breast cancer can target men as well as women. The American Cancer Society estimates that 2360 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year, with 430 deaths. The lifetime risk for breast cancer for a man is 1 in 1000 – much less than the 1 in 8 for women, but not zero. Each person with breast cancer is one person too many – be they male or female.
The Times highlighted the topic because of a stunning photo series entitled The Scar Project/Men. Using the power of stark images, fashion photographer David Jay highlights the need for awareness of male breast cancer. His images bring humanity and dignity to a subject which is all too often ignored or shunned.
A while back, we covered the topic of male breast cancer with regards to risk factors and diagnosis. The need for support for men facing a diagnosis of breast cancer is real as well. There are a myriad of organizations supporting the causes of women with breast cancer – resources for men and breast cancer are harder to find. As we stress for anyone facing breast cancer or any serious health issue, it is important to know that you are not alone. HIS Breast Cancer is an organization created for men with breast cancer, supporting survivors and their loved ones. We highly recommend them as a resource.
Breast cancer can affect anyone. Spreading knowledge and awareness of the disease in all its many forms will help those affected today and will hopefully lead to a future where breast cancer is no longer a killer of women – or men.
Image credit: Richard Roundtree 1973 promo photo for Shaft via Wikimedia Commons Copyright Public Domain
Originally published 3/3/14 on mammographykc.com.