The Women’s Breast & Heart Health Initiative Florida Affiliate (WBHI) will be taking its mission of promoting early detection and awareness to the streets again for the 2011 April Outreach Campaign Saturday mornings on April 9, April 16, and April 23. Mar 30, 2011 – The Women’s Breast & Heart Health Initiative Florida Affiliate (WBHI) will be taking its mission of promoting early detection and awareness to the streets again for the 2011 April Outreach Campaign Saturday mornings on April 9, April 16, and April 23. The goal of WBHI is to reduce the incidence of undetected, untreated breast cancer by providing women in underserved neighborhoods with the appropriate awareness, education and screening. WBHI volunteers will knock on the doors of households within the City of Miramar, delivering important breast health awareness packages, talking to residents, and making free mammogram appointments on the spot for women who qualify. On April 30, a mobile mammography van will visit the neighborhood and perform the screenings that were scheduled during the outreach. The organization plans to knock on a total of 10,000 doors this year. WBHI believes that all women have the right to benefit from the early detection of breast cancer regardless of their ability to pay, and fights breast cancer as a life threatening disease, one household at a time. Since 2006 WBHI has knocked on more than 33,000 doors to save lives in South Florida. Andrea Ivory, internationally recognized 2009 Top Ten CNN Hero, breast cancer survivor, and founder of WBHI knows that early detection saves lives, because it saved hers. She founded WBHI, the premiere source of free door to door breast health awareness, education and screening to the uninsured and underserved in South Florida. “Breast cancer kills our grandmothers, mothers, sisters, daughters, family and friends. ALL women are at risk for breast cancer. Although early detection saves lives, not all women have access and awareness;” states Andrea, “That’s what we’re out there to do.” The Women’s Imaging Center at Memorial Healthcare System supports the efforts of WBHI by collaborating to provide our participants with free screening right in the neighborhood served. Who: The Women’s Breast & Heart Health Initiative Florida Affiliate What: Door to door campaign offering free breast health awareness, education and mammograms to the uninsured and underserved. Where: City of Miramar, Florida 33025 When: April 9, 16, 23 – Starting – 8:30AM • April 30th –Starting at 9AM Contact: Andrea Ivory, Founder, Women’s Breast & Heart Health Initiative, FL Affiliate 866–315–7711 # # #
Putting lump size into perspectiveThe term “breast cancer” refers to a malignant tumor that has developed from cells in the breast. As a breast cancer tumor grows, it becomes more aggressive and is more likely to spread to other parts of the body – which is why early detection is so important. Cancer is diagnosed with a “stage” which is based on several combined factors: 1.) the size of the tumor, 2.) whether the cancer is invasive or non-invasive, 3.) whether lymph nodes are involved, and 4.) whether the cancer has spread beyond the breast. It can take up to two years for a one centimeter tumor to grow large enough to be felt. In that time, cancer cells can rapidly multiply and start spreading. Elizabeth Edwards, who recently passed away after a second battle with cancer, is a prime example of why early detection is so critical. Edwards, who found a lump “the size of a plum” was diagnosed in 2004 with Stage II breast cancer that had already spread to several lymph nodes. Edwards had admitted to missing her annual mammogram two years in a row. “I knew better, just like they know better,” Edwards says of women who delay getting routine screening mammograms. As you can see in the illustrations, mammograms can find lumps that are significantly smaller than what a woman or doctor can feel during breast self examination. If you are 40 or over, getting your mammogram each year can potentially detect a tumor in its earliest stage, before it has a chance to grow and spread to other parts of your body. For all women, it’s important to simply know your breasts, how they look and feel and what is “normal” for you. Doing optional Breast Self Exams (BSEs) is one way for women to know how their breasts normally look and feel and to notice any changes. The goal, with or without BSE, is to report any breast changes to a doctor or nurse right away. Some changes to be aware of in your breasts include: – Any new lump (which may or may not be painful or tender) – Unusual thickening of your breasts – Sticky or bloody discharge from your nipples – Any changes in the skin of your nipples or breasts, such as puckering or dimpling – An unusual increase in the size of one breast – One breast unusually lower than the other Most of the time, these breast changes are not cancer, but you should see your health care provider as soon as possible for evaluation if you notice something that you think is not normal for you.