Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in Singapore. According to the Singapore Cancer Society, each year, over 1600 women are diagnosed to have breast cancer and almost 400 die from the disease.
Some myths about breast cancer and breast cancer screening in Singapore make women think twice about getting a screen. One such myth goes: If you’re at risk of breast cancer, there’s little you can do about it but watch out for the symptoms.
The truth is there’s a lot that you can do to lower your risk of breast cancer. Aside from making healthy lifestyle changes, having breast cancer screening in Singapore clinics or hospitals will help you detect early signs of the disease and seek early treatment.
A mammogram is a common method of breast cancer screening in Singapore and worldwide. It is an X-ray examination of the breasts to detect lumps or tumours.
BreastScreen Singapore (BSS) is the national programme for breast cancer screening in Singapore that encourages women aged 40 – 49 to go for mammogram at a yearly intervals, and for women above the age of 50 years and older to be screened once every two years. While many Singaporean women have already undergone breast cancer screening at least once, some still fear undergoing the procedure in part due to common myths about mammogram, such as:
Myth: Annual mammograms expose women to so much radiation that they increase the risk of cancer.
Truth: The dose of radiation in mammogram is so low that any associated risks are negligible when compared to the huge preventive benefits you can reap from the test.
Myth: A mammogram is painful.
Truth: A mammogram can feel different for each person. One mammography coordinator shares that 99% of her patients say their mammogram wasn’t painful at all. Quite understandably, the fear of mammogram is high for those who are doing it for the first time. Women over 40 in Singapore do not report pain or uneasiness in doing a mammogram.
Aside from having an annual breast cancer screening in Singapore clinics or hospitals, you can lower your risk of having breast cancer by doing these:
There are other breast cancer risk factors which you will have little or no control of, like being a woman, child bearing at a late age or not having children at all, family history of breast cancer and the age when you started and stopped having periods.
Going for breast cancer screening in clinics or hospitals is recommended if you have one or more of the risk factors. Breast cancer screening can help you detect early signs of breast cancer, which leads to earlier treatment and better outcomes.
See your doctor today for breast cancer screening in Singapore and increase your chance of fighting breast cancer.