The incidence of breast cancer in India is increasing at an alarming rate and more and more ladies are being detected with this disease in their 30’s and 40’s.
Breast cancer not only affects the physical appearance of the patient but also has a huge impact on their mental and psychological well being. In addition to the patient, the family also becomes part of the treatment.
Once patients finish their treatment, it is important for them to get back to their daily routine, so that they can keep their mind off the disease. Family, friends and strong support group play a huge role in this aspect of a breast cancer warrior’s journey.
To celebrate these warriors, we recently organised a support group meeting at W Pratiksha Hospital, Gurgaon, which was well attended by many breast cancer patients and their families.
Nipple discharge is a common problem with which ladies present to our Breast Clinic. Nipple discharge can be of many types ranging from clear fluid to frank blood.
Greenish nipple discharge is commonly seen in ladies between the ages of 40-55 years. It is common in ladies who smoke and those are suffering from diabetes.
Breast Cancer should be ruled out in all these patients by doing a triple assessment, i.e. clinical examination, imaging & biopsy. Once cancer has been ruled out, patient should be re-assured and if there is any inflammation, antibiotics can be given. In case of persistent discharge and a lump, the implicated ducts can be surgically removed.
We don’t remember days, we remember moments
It’s always a delightful moment to see the smile on a patient’s face, when they conquer breast cancer.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Indian women now. The most common presentation of this condition is in the form of a painless lump in the breast. Early diagnosis of this dreaded condition can lead to complete cure. So, don’t ignore a lump in the breast as it could be cancer.
A common problem that I face during my practice is that some patients refuse to get biopsies done when they are detected with a breast lump. The reason behind this misconception is that they feel that the cancer will start to spread after the biopsy.
Patients need to be explained that this is a myth and there is no scientific data to support this misconception. Also patients need to understand that it is not possible for doctors to come to a diagnosis of breast cancer, unless a biopsy is performed.
Hair loss during chemotherapy can be a huge psychological and physical blow to a lady. Today, we tried the Paxman scalp cooling device on two of our chemotherapy patients. This device leads to vasoconstriction of the scalp vessels and reduces hair loss during chemo.
Studies done using the device report a 70% reduction in hair loss with Paclitaxel based chemotherapy ( used for breast cancer, ovarian cancer) and a 30% reduction in hair loss with adriamycin (used for breast cancer) based chemotherapy.
Surviving cancer is not the end of a gruesome story but the beginning of a beautiful one. A big salute to all the cancer Conquerors out there. #cancersurvivorsday #cancerconquerors #breastcancer