October is annually accepted as international Breast Cancer Awareness month. The month is crucial in creating awareness around this common dreaded disease that affects at least one in 26 women in South Africa.
The Pink Drive mobile clinic travels throughout the country doing breast cancer examinations and education. They also teach women to do self-examinations and ways to prevent breast cancer.
Marge Angamuthu a young volunteer at the youth centre explained: “At the clinic you will undergo a clinical breast examination and if nurses suspect any irregularities, you can get a mammogram done immediately in their mobile clinic. Mammograms are x-rays of the breast tissue that are also used to detect abnormal breast masses. The nurses will also do pap smears to detect for signs of cervical cancer.
“The incidents of breast cancer among South African women is increasing and it is one of the most common cancers. Breast exams should be done every 2-3 years for women between 21 and 39-years old. Women 40-years and older are recommend to do annual breast exams. One of the important things to note about breast cancer is that early detection can save a life. Women with a family history of cancer are at an increased risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer. Pink Drive also teach women how to do self examinations,” Angamuthu elaborated.