Methodist Hospital is going pink , albeit temporarily.
In observance of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the nursing staff and others who wear the usual blue exam gloves will wear pink gloves during October.
“This is a small but visible way we can help increase awareness among our patients and their families,” said Methodist Hospital President and CEO Dan Ausman. “We want our patients to achieve their best health for life, and this is a positive reminder for people to be proactive in their own healthcare by getting regular check-ups.”
This year more than 200,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed among American women and more than 2,000 new cases in men. Except cancers of the skin, breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed in women. About 40,000 deaths from breast cancer are expected in 2013. Breast cancer ranks second behind lung cancer as a cause of cancer death in women.
Because breast cancer typically shows no symptoms when a tumor is small and most treatable, it is important for women to follow recommended screening guidelines to detect breast cancer at an early stage. Larger tumors may become evident as a breast mass, which is often painless. Less common symptoms include persistent changes to the breast, such as thickening, swelling, distortion, tenderness, skin irritation, redness, scaliness or nipple abnormalities. Breast pain is more likely to be caused by benign conditions and is not a common early symptom of breast cancer.
The most important risk factor for breast cancer – besides being female – is increasing age. Potentially modifiable risk factors include weight gain after age 18, being overweight or obese, use of menopausal hormone therapy, physical inactivity and alcohol consumption. Breast cancer screening for women who are at average risk includes clinical breast exam and mammography, which can often detect breast cancer at an early stage when treatment is more effective and a cure is more likely.
Methodist Hospital’s cancer program offers the most advanced cancer diagnostics, treatment and personalized care, including advanced radiation therapy program, chemotherapy, prostate seek program, surgery, pain management, cancer support groups and a new Positive Appearance Center for cancer patients. The Cancer Resource Center staff offers help and support to those who have had a cancer diagnosis. The center is open 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Thursday, and 7 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Friday. For information on the center’s services, please call 626-574-3515 or 626-574-3757.