Use pulpit to educate on breast cancer - Lordina Mahama urges
A former First Lady, Lordina Mahama, has underscored the need for religious bodies and other organisations to spend considerable time of their worship periods to educate members on breast cancer.
That, she said, was to help create awareness and demystify the myths about the disease and to help in its prevention and cure.
She said education was very critical in dealing with the disease, hence the need for religious bodies to help in the fight against it.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with the Daily Graphic, as part of activities to mark the World Breast Cancer Awareness Day, Mrs Mahama said, “together, we can make a difference”.
Breast cancer awareness is an effort to raise awareness and reduce the stigma of breast cancer through education on screening, symptoms and treatment.
About 30 per cent of early-stage breast cancers eventually spread to parts of the body away from the breast.
October 13 is nationally recognised in the United States as Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day, and the day is intended to drive awareness of the need for more research about metastatic disease.
Mrs Mahama, therefore, underscored the need to conduct regular breast examination as a way of early detection of breast abnormalities.
She urged the public to take seriously early warning signs such as irritated or itchy breast, change in breast colour, increase in breast size or shape-over a short period of time,a breast lump, among others.
Mrs Mahama expressed concern about how some of those who detected the warning signs chose to resort to unaccredited providers and suppliers of herbal products, stressing that “there is always the need to report to qualified medical doctors for advice and the necessary attention.”
“It is unfortunate that many people will rush to prayer camps and unorthodox medical centres for remedy the first time they detect the warning signs, only to change their centres when the problems have aggravated.
This is not good,” she stressed.
The former First Lady further reiterated the call for people to visit the hospitals regularly within the year and not to wait for October, which had been declared as the breast cancer awareness month.
“I strongly believe, there is the need for us to sustain awareness of breast cancer throughout the year rather than wait till October.
With this, we will be able to nip the disease in the bud.”
Mrs Mahama also used the occasion to encourage those who had the disease not to be discourage in life, since there could be solution to such challenges.
She underscored the need for a collaboration among all stakeholders aimed at enhancing breast cancer awareness and added that “we must expand access to screening and treatment and provide the necessary support systems for those battling this disease.”