Breast Cancer – What You Need to Know!

Breast Cancer – What You Need to Know!

each year more than 300,000 Americans are diagnosed with breast cancer actress Vanessa Bella Callaway was one of them most people know me as an actress and some know me as a producer and a director but what a lot of people don’t know is that I was a dancer being healthy is very important to me I eat right exercise for years and being married to a doctor of course health is very important in our home I get my mammograms yearly I’ve started at the age of 40 and I’ve always done everything right I was shocked at the diagnosis of breast cancer [Music] Vanessa Bell Calloway is a stage TV and film actress she was one of the original cast members of Broadway’s dream girls and co-starred in films alongside Eddie Murphy Angela Bassett and Denzel Washington she’s currently starring in the television drama saints and sinners please welcome Vanessa Bell Callaway [Applause] thank you so much for being here it is so very important for us to keep awareness going about breast cancer if breast cancer is the most common cancer behind skin cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death and women in the United States and you know with this disease cells in the breast tissue grow out of control and can form a tumor that may be felt as a lump by the time a lump is large enough to feel though it may have been growing for as long as 10 years but a lump doesn’t always have to be the first indicator of breast cancer and that was the case with you wasn’t it dr. Freda that was my case I had no symptoms whatsoever I felt perfectly fine and in my yearly mammogram I was diagnosed with DCIS DCIS is an overgrowth of cells in the lining of the breast milk duct and is non-invasive when cancer spreads from the duct to other breast tissue it’s then considered invasive you know this kind of cancer occurs in about one out of every five cases of breast cancer and as Vanessa told us earlier it may not have a lump which means it could be missed on a routine breast examination with other cancers they may change the size or the shape of your breasts they may also cause dimpling so you want to look out for that or retraction of the nipple or scaling this and redness in the nipple or elsewhere in the breast and then last but not least if there’s a fluid that’s leaking from the nipple that is not breast milk you want to pay attention to that as well thankfully you caught your cancer early tell us how you were diagnosed well I was a couple of months behind on my mammogram because I was working and when I finally got to my mammogram I saw the x-ray myself and there was something that told me overwhelmingly that that was going to be cancer and I picked me well the margins weren’t clear and then my doctor had me go back and do a second lumpectomy just days after unfortunately the margins still weren’t clear so we decided that the mastectomy was best it was a skin sparing mastectomy which took away everything the nipple included but just saved the skin and I’m so happy that I did it it just wasn’t worth trying to save that breast after all make decisions about her treatment because treatments vary from from woman to woman as the cancer is diagnosed and it’ll depend on the type of cancer the stage etc and so early detection and diagnosis is key you should know your risk factors one of them is a family history of breast cancer and so women who have a family history of breast cancer can have a doubled risk of getting breast cancer that risk can triple if you have two close relatives that have breast cancer so it’s important to know your family history and to make sure your doctor knows your family history as well the majority of breast cancers are diagnosed after the age of 50 but Vanessa hold were you I was 52 so you were 52 which is one of the risk factors from an age standpoint but another risk factor is race although white women get breast cancer more often so they’re more likely to get it black women are more likely to die from breast cancer and so this seems to be because we get diagnosed at later stages but the other important thing to do is getting genotyped when you’re diagnosed so that the right treatment can be determined is also very important in terms of screening the American Cancer Society recommends that every woman gets routine breast examinations and women between the ages of 45 and 54 should get annual mammograms and once you’re 55 is every other year men can get breast cancer as well it’s very rare but if you’re a man and notice symptoms get it checked out now Vanessa before we go I’ve heard that you found a way to turn lemons into lemonade tell us about that well I got a lap what they call it lap but they took a little fat from my stomach and they made the breast so not only did I get a new breast with my own tissue I got a tummy tuck to boot [Applause] and I am eight years cancer-free I just had my math for more resources of course you can go to get healthy stay so there’s a lot there are a lot of tools and resources for people who are affected by cancer so we’ve tried to collect some of those on get healthy stay along with more information about breast cancer and of course while you’re there you can sign up for our newsletter and get information on health sent directly to you you

8 Replies to “Breast Cancer – What You Need to Know!”

  1. I get mammograms every 6 months and breast MRI every year because I grow tumors due to a pten gene mutation aka cowden syndrome. my breast cancer never had symptoms. the right breast started bleeding and dcis was found and 6 months later the left breast had stage 2 cancer. (no symptoms) I am having a mastectomy because I have 100s of tumors that can't be monitored so removal is the best for me… I was in my late 20s when first diagnosed.

  2. My step mom had breast cancer. Thank you so much for sharing. I wish I would have known what I know now. Have you stopped the poison – eating meat and dairy? Fast if you're not hungry (look up Nobel Prize in Medicine). Eat berries, melons and grapes (look up Mucusless Diet). Learn more about the cure with Dr. Morse and Dr. Gregor. I wish you all the best.

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