Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed malignancy among Polish women. Mrs. Justyna and Mrs. Joanna encourage regular examinations in their campaign.
They call themselves onco-sisters. They both had regular check-ups and both were told they had breast cancer. – I just wanted to laugh. I thought that if it was cancer, it could be dealt with, recalls Justyna Uchrońska. – Regularity saved my life. Thanks to the fact that I listened to my inner voice, I am where I am – emphasizes Joanna Borkowska.
That’s why today they encourage research together and do it in an unusual way, because Justyna, Joanna and four other women stood in front of the photographer’s lens. Their campaign is primarily intended to mobilize women, but also to show that losing hair or breasts does not mean losing femininity.
– This femininity is what we feel inside. This is our delicacy, but at the same time our strength, which is revealed during treatment – emphasizes Uchrońska.
Although the campaign and Pink October are coming to an end, the alarming data and conclusions are still valid. Breast cancer is the most common malignancy in women. About 20,000 of them are diagnosed with it every year.
– Poland is a country with an average incidence but high mortality rate of breast cancer. This is mainly due to the fact that we receive patients in advanced stages of cancer – says Dr. Leszek Kozłowski, a specialist in oncological surgery at the Białystok Ontology Center.
– Women with advanced cancer come to us and say that they have never had any disease, have never had any tests, and have survived for many years – says Dr. Joanna Kufel-Grabowska, a clinical oncologist from the Department of Oncology and Radiotherapy of the Medical University of Gdańsk.
“Poland is about prevention”
According to the National Health Fund, in 2022 only every third woman aged 50 to 69 covered by the breast cancer prevention program took advantage of free tests.
– Unfortunately, prevention is key in Poland. Early detection of cancer very often results in full recovery, or in the fact that the woman can undergo less mutilating forms of therapy – notes Prof. Marzena Dębska, specialist in gynecology, obstetrics and perinatology from the Dębski Clinic.
It is good for women to be aware that from November 1, more of them will be able to benefit from free mammography. The extended preventive program will cover women aged 45 to 74. – These are also the recommendations of medical specialists who said that such an extension would be rational, and also the voices of patients – says Katarzyna Sójka, Minister of Health.
However, this does not mean that younger women can forget about tests. – People are getting sick at younger and younger ages, which means that even though we have lowered this age, women who are 20 years old should still perform self-examination – recommends Karolina Sobieraj, president of the “Świości Życia” Foundation. – By examining ourselves, we will prolong our lives, because life is beautiful – says Borkowska.
Main photo source: Fakty TVN