Breast Cancer Education

Initiated and sponsored by Goldman Sachs Gives, United Family Healthcare and Peking University Cancer Hospital jointly launched a comprehensive series of books in Chinese, “All About Breast Cancer”, with the support of the Samsung Medical Center. 14 booklets and 1 children’s book were produced to focus on raising awareness for breast cancer survivorship.

Now this series of e-books can be downloaded for free below in Chinese:

General Breast Cancer FAQ

Although many advances have been made in the screening and treatment of breast cancer in recent years, there are still many unanswered questions concerning the cause of the disease in a majority of cases.  Therefore, there are many misunderstandings about the facts of breast cancer. It’s time that we present the known facts to dispel the myths about breast cancer.

Myth: I’m too young to worry about breast cancer.

Fact: When we are young, breast cancer is probably the last thing to worry about. It’s true that the risk of breast cancer increases with age.  In younger women, 20 – 39 years of age, breast cancer is less common than their older counterparts.  However, it does happen in the younger population especially if there is a strong family history. You are never too young to start screening for breast cancer! Breast self-examination should begin by the age of 20.

Myth: There has never been a case of breast cancer in my family, so I don’t need to worry about it happening to me.

Fact: It is true that your risk of developing breast cancer is significantly increased if your mother and sisters ever have had breast cancer.  However, a majority of women diagnosed with breast cancer does not have a family history of breast cancer.

Myth: The majority of women diagnosed with breast cancer have more than one risk factor prior to diagnosis.

Fact: All women are at risk for developing breast cancer whether they have known risk factors or not. In fact, a majority of breast cancer patients has no other risk factors other than being female. The most common risk factors include a family history, atypical hyperplasia, delaying pregnancy until after age 30 or never having been pregnant, early menstruation (before age 12), late menopause (after age 55), current use or recent use of oral contraceptives in the last ten years and daily consumption of alcohol.

Myth: Breast cancer is preventable.

Fact: An antiestrogen drug, tamoxifen, may decrease breast cancer risk in some women, however, most of the breast cancer is not preventable. The real key to survive breast cancer is early detection and curative treatment.

Myth: Having yearly mammograms will expose me to too much radiation and will increase my risk of having cancer.

Fact: According to the American College of Radiology, the benefits of annual mammograms far outweigh the risk of minute amount of radiation that occurs during the procedure of mammography.  The amount of radiation exposure with a single mammographic examination equals, to about that received during a 2-hour exposure to sunlight.  A mammogram may detect breast cancer as earlier as a year or two before you or your physician could palpate a lump by physical examination. Breast cancer detected at an early stage has the best chance of cure.

Myth: I’m not going to breastfeed my baby because breastfeeding would increase my risk of getting breast cancer.

Fact: Just the opposite is true. You have probably heard all the time that breastfeeding can benefit your baby and breastfeeding provides substantial benefits to the mother as well. Breastfeeding may actually decrease the risk of premenopausal breast cancer, the risk declines with a longer duration of breastfeeding.