Saturday, October 9, 2010

A post-script on Breast Cancer Awareness

Many of you know that I'm a breast cancer survivor-thriver.  (Life is really good, thank God, and it is no longer a big deal unless you're one of my doctors... then its a big deal if I even show up at the hospital with a hangnail.) 

I met one of the bloggers I admire, Dr. Gerard Nadal, last June at this event for LI Catholic Writers.  We hit it off from the moment we both learned we are SJU alumni. (Go Redmen Red Storm!)  "Gerry" and I were delighted to share a wonderful dinner with the conference team at a local diner (what's not to love, LI?) before we all parted company.

Let me just say, folks, that we need more great scientists with proper Catholic formation, like Dr. Nadal. (Let's face it: we need great Catholics, really, in every profession, but I digress.)

Add his blog to your blogroll if you have one. (He tweets too.) This man is doing great work in the service of life.

Here is his most recent post on "Breast Cancer, Science, Medicine, Prophets, and Hope" that I invite you to read regarding breast cancer stats that he reprinted from a fellow scholar's presentation:

It is often said by cancer organizations that 70% of women with breast cancer have no identifiable risk factors and that we should give them money to find a cure. It is simply untrue that 70% of all breast cancer patients have no identifiable risk factors. If 75% of women of reproductive age have taken oral contraceptives they are at increased risk. If 20% of the women in this country remain childless, they are at increased risk. If 50% of post menopausal women have taken hormone replacement therapy, they are at increased risk.

Let’s be more more than “aware” in Breast Cancer Awareness Month. You’d have to be deaf, dumb and blind not to be aware that breast cancer exists and is a threat to many women. It’s on the TV news and cable channels, radio, the internet, magazines, newspapers, and even the shopping channel as a patient once told me. You can‟t even go to the grocery store in October without being faced with pink ribbons on food containers to benefit one organization or another.

Let’s be proactive and not just aware. Let’s be pro active make and women aware that breast cancer is curable in many cases if not in at least half those diagnosed with screening mammograms.

We already know lots about what causes breast cancer and what can increase a woman’s risk. Breast cancer is not the fickle finger of fate randomly pointed at women. There are many other avoidable risks. We can hope and expect to reduce breast cancer rates with prevention.
In short, there is much more, so run along now and read the whole thing. At the end of that post, you'll find some worthy, scholarly research institutes to support with your hard-earned cash. Go do it. Please. 

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