Breast cancer coverage was outstanding

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I would like to commend The Augusta Chronicle and Staff Writer Tom Corwin for the excellent job they did with this year's Breast Cancer Awareness Month theme and articles. From their "pink" newsprint edition Oct. 1, to the informative educational series, to their "stories of survival," I believe they were successful in increasing our community's awareness of this disease in a very positive manner.

As the husband of a 12-year breast cancer survivor, I can attest to the importance of regular screening; early detection and treatment; education; and support groups. The newspaper emphasized them all October. This was not the case for us in October 1997. The "unknown" and waiting we experienced were devastating. That is why the paper's effort is so important today.

I expect there will be a few who question why the paper dedicated so much time and effort to one disease. In response, I would argue that all of the points made last month about breast cancer could be transferable to other diseases and types of cancer. Screening, early detection, education and support can be applied to prostate cancer and diabetes.

In concert with The Augusta Chronicle, area hospitals and other organizations have played host to numerous activities (from the Think Pink Dinner to the Miracle Mile Walk) throughout October to increase awareness, plus recognize survivors and raise money for treatment and research. Augusta should be very proud of this level of awareness and caring, and of its local resources -- the area's medical/surgical expertise; the latest technology for diagnosis and treatment; numerous groups for emotional and spiritual support; and readily available education).

A generation ago, breast cancer was not mentioned in public and was usually kept a family secret. This month, breast cancer survivors were portraits of hope in this newspaper.

Thank you!

Andy Anderson, Martinez

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Roeschen 11/02/09 - 05:05 am
I commend the AC for its

I commend the AC for its excellent coverage of breast cancer. 192,370 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnoses during 2009 and more than 40,000 people will lose their lives to breast cancer. However, 192,280 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed this year with approximately 28,000 deaths and more than 219,000 new cases of lung cancer will be diagnosed with over 160,000 deaths. Lung cancer is the greater killer of people. Why then, focus on only breast cancer? Why not address all of the cancers and make people very aware that although the number of new cases and deaths are falling, the numbers are still very high and we have a long way to go to eradicate cancer as the second leading cause of death - only trailing heart disease - in the US.

xanadu 11/02/09 - 08:47 am
how about all the other

how about all the other cancers? leukemia? prostate? lung? brain? liver? skin? cancer is cancer is cancer is cancer. there should just be one, general cancer-awareness month and no focus on any particular group. bowling for boobies??? save the ta-tas? how sophomoric is that? can't wait to see the cute little fundraiser ideas they come up with for penile cancer.

soldout 11/02/09 - 01:47 pm
For early cancer detection

For early cancer detection mammography has been used the 1950's. Today there is another cancer screening option. Digital infrared thermal imaging or thermography was FDA approved for use in 1982. It is a non-invasive method that is pain-free and radiation free. Thermography is a quick and easy procedure using an infrared camera to detect abnormal skin temperatures, which can be an indication of tissue inflammation. Thermography often indicates potential problem areas in tissue up to 10 years earlier than a mammogram. Where mammography is looking for actual masses, thermography is a test of physiology and looks for functional changes in the breast tissue which may indicate problems before the mass forms. In a German study using computerized regulation thermography, the accuracy of diagnosis rose to 92%; 20% more accurate than mammography. Several published studies on the radiation effects of routine mammograms have lead to some concern. One Swedish study showed that nearly 30% more cases of breast cancer occurred in those women who had been subjected to mammograms for ten years, than those never receiving mammograms (British Medical Journal, 1988; 297: 943-9).

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