Breast cancer epidemiology then, is concerned with the risk factors that make humans more susceptible, or more likely, to get breast cancer. These professionals are usually doctors or other types of physicians who have studied epidemiology in addition to their clinical background experiences. Paired with a medical degree, the study of breast cancer epidemiology can help to identify and test those who are at the largest risk for the disease. Many factors are calculated such as personal family history, diet and exercise habits, whether or not one is a smoker, etc. and tests are suggested. Beginning at around age forty, women of all nationalities should begin getting annual breast exams. This combined with regular visits to a primary care physician skilled in women’s health issues will give the best chances for early detection, which is critical to survival.
If your health care professional is familiar with the study of breast cancer epidemiology, it is a good indicator that he or she knows what risk factors are involved, how to identify and quantify the factors and will wisely educate you and suggest certain tests you should submit to in order to improve your overall care. While no one can eliminate the chances of getting breast cancer, there are certain steps you can take to reduce your risks. Making sure that you educate yourself on what risk factors may be most applicable to you, either by family history or genetics, is one way to identify, very early on, your chance of possibly developing any type of cancer, but as a woman, especially breast cancer. This type of cancer can be devastating to a woman who has to loose a part of herself in order to stay alive and well. These changes aren’t only physical, but psychological in nature and as difficult for some women to deal with as the cancer itself.
Avoiding oral contraceptive use and maintaining a diet low in saturated fats and alcohol are two immediately available solutions. Making sure that you go when you are scheduled for a cancer screening and clinical breast exams are two more. Taking the time to discuss with your doctor breast cancer epidemiology can open the door to discussions on risk reduction and treatments that will be best for you.