the mayte prida foundation







What is Breast Cancer


Breast cancer is the most common cancer within the female population in the United States. In a lower percentage men have the probability to get it as well. Recent studies show that approximately 200,000 women and 2000 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the US this year alone.

Up until a few years ago, having breast cancer was thought of as receiving a "death sentence". Fortunately, it is no longer like that. With early detection, breast cancer can be cured. This is why so much importance is placed on self exams and yearly mammograms. Especially for women over the age of 40.

There are different factors that can cause a woman to get breast cancer. From the standpoint of traditional medicine breast cancer could be caused by: hereditary genetics, a woman's age during her pregnancies or the over consumption of alcohol.

From the spiritual point of view, it could be caused by an imbalance of emotions, suppressed feelings, anger or stress. The fact is that true origin of this disease is still unknown.

Breast cancer is an uncontrolled growth of breast cells. It occurs as a result of mutations, or abnormal changes, in the genes responsible for regulating the growth of cells and keeping them healthy. Normally, the cells in our bodies replace themselves through an orderly process of cell growth: healthy new cells take over as old ones die out. But over time mutations can "turn on" certain genes and "turn off" others in a cell. That changed cell gains the ability to keep dividing without control or order, producing more cells just like it and forming a tumor. A tumor can be benign (not dangerous) or malignant (has the potential to be dangerous).

There are a great variety of tumors and can range from the least dangerous to the most serious but the majority of them, if detected early enough, can be cured.

Once cancer appears in the breast tissue and begins to spread to other parts of the body, it is called metastasis. Metastasis occurs when the spread of these cancerous cells reach the lymphatic nodes in the underarms. Each type of cancer has specific areas and organs where the cancerous cells travel to and metastasize. In breast cancer, metastasis can occur in the bones, the liver, the lungs or the brain.

Having breast cancer is truly difficult. The healing process is hard, painful and aggravating both physically and emotionally. Compassion towards the patient is fundamental as well as the support that she/he receives from family members and friends. Fighting cancer is a team effort!

But let us not forget, breast cancer no longer means death, it means becoming a warrior in life.

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