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breast cancer. In 2016, “we took a step back”, the pandemic added its share. Doctors: The number of cancers has doubled in 20 years

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In the case of breast cancer, prevention is of particular importance – with early detection of changes, you can completely recover. However, as experts said in “You get up and weekend” on TVN24, almost two-thirds of Polish women do not want to be examined at all, and they come to doctors at an advanced stage of the disease. – Women do not come for examinations, they do not sign up. They know about them, but they are afraid. Fear is ubiquitous, says psycho-oncologist Małgorzata Czyżewska-Kleczkowska.

Oncologist Jerzy Giermek, MD, PhD, emphasized at the beginning of the interview on TVN24 that breast cancer has become a disease of civilization, and a steady increase in incidence has been visible in recent years. reasons? – Little exercise, overweight, late first child, a small number of children in general, or menopausal hormone therapy – enumerates the expert.

– All this causes the number of these cancers to increase. Over the last 20 years, it has almost doubled – admits Dr. Giermek.

The reasons and the increase in the number of cases are one thing. Another – equally important issue – is prevention. Małgorzata Czyżewska-Kleczkowska, a psycho-oncologist from the Luxmed group, admits that many women simply do not get tested.

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Read also: More and more cancer. A “gap for which we will pay for a few more years” has been created

– These studies are ineffective, although they are available. Women don’t come to them, they don’t sign up. They know about them, but they are afraid. Fear is ubiquitous. There is such a stereotypical belief that if I don’t touch it, I don’t go to the doctor and he won’t find me anything, then it won’t happen. It’s terrible what I’m talking about that consciousness is so low. Often women could be saved, especially in the initial stage, not so invasive. But there are many women who report at a very late stage – says Czyżewska-Kleczkowska.

Talk to experts about breast cancerTVN24

“Step back”. Doctor: A personalized invitation really works

As Dr. Giermek says, “in 2016 we took a step back”. Until then, invitations for breast examinations went directly to women, which translated into higher attendance.

– We withdrew from this program in 2016, contrary to European guidelines. Testing is now possible. Healthcare providers, especially private ones, send them invitations on the basis of their patient database. But now, every year, there are more and more vintages that have not been examined. No information goes to them. And now there are possibilities, says the oncologist.

Read also: breast cancer. Causes of the disease, symptoms, treatment and prevention. The most important rules

– A personalized name invitation, for example from a Primary Care physician, really works. Women feel invited, they get something dedicated to them. Some percentage will always not benefit, but it would be good to return to it. These were the good examples that worked – emphasized the psychooncologist in “Wstasz i weekend”.

Experts in the studio emphasized that even 20-year-old women should be educated to regularly perform breast self-examination. Ultrasound scans are recommended in your thirties, and mammograms in your fifties. In smaller centres, the availability of such examinations is lower, but mobile labs are trying to reach them there.

– Mammobuses come and announce their arrival earlier. If we have doctors in smaller centers who know that this mammobus will be available and the information will be sent to patients, they sign up. You can see in these smaller towns that there are even queues for testing – says Czyżewska-Kleczkowska.

Read also: Breast cancer affects not only women. Hundreds of men are diagnosed with this cancer every year

Impact of the pandemic

When in 2020 the world held its breath due to the disease pandemic COVID-19This has had an impact on many areas of life. Also on the subject of cancer. The statistics at that time may seem to have been more favorable (fewer diagnosed cases), but this was only due to the reduced number of tests performed.

Cancer doesn’t wait for covid to end. The cancer has grown, so now women present at a more advanced stage and treatment results are definitely worse. We are taking the toll of the pandemic – admits Dr. Giermek.

The oncologist sets an example Swedenwhere more than 80 percent women are examined regularly. The goal is for this percentage to exceed 70% in Poland. The current situation with these numbers is disastrous.

Read also: Europe is facing a ‘cancer epidemic’. Experts indicate the reasons and alarm

– In 2015, the last year of active invitations, we covered almost 45 percent of the population. At the moment we have 37 percent, and it increased anyway, because in the year of the pandemic it was 34 percent. On the occasion of these invitations, provincial regional centers that conducted information campaigns and picnics were also liquidated. I think we should go back to more active forms of information. There was a report NIKwhich proved to be inefficient and quite expensive. Only no one has calculated how much it costs to treat advanced breast cancer and how much it costs to treat an early stage. Financially, it is a huge difference – says Dr. Giermek and adds that in the subclinical stage, doctors are able to cure almost one hundred percent of women.

Talk to experts about breast cancerTVN24

Doctors: the key is self-examination

Czyżewska-Kleczkowska shared a story from her own life during the conversation. She detected a change in herself, but the gynecologist she consulted with her downplayed the subject and said that the woman was exaggerating.

– Fortunately, the Primary Health Care doctor performed an ultrasound for me and it was confirmed that this change, although small, is there. From my point of view, it was insignificant, but there was already metastasis to the lymph nodes. (…) I keep emphasizing that, after my experience, when someone is regularly examined, we know each other. And we really are able to palpate every change – emphasizes the oncopsychologist.

– Women should force doctors to carry out diagnostic tests. If he goes to the doctor and claims that he has a change, because he senses it and insists on an examination, the doctor will have to perform it – adds Dr. Giermek.

Main photo source: Shutterstock



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