Raising Awareness and Care

by BTM

Mon, 01 October 2018

Raising Awareness and Care

October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Middle East Hospital has special screening packages for women of all ages.

Worldwide, breast cancer is the most common type in women and the second highest in terms of mortality rates. Men can also develop breast cancer, although incidences are rare. About 90 per cent of all breast cancer cases start in the tissue of the milk ducts or in the lobules that supply milk to the ducts. It’s possible to diagnose breast cancer at an early stage, which greatly increases the chances of successful treatment.

Risk Factors 

  • Age: Women who are over the age of 50 are at greater risk.
  • Family and personal history of breast and ovarian cancer: The risk of developing breast cancer is higher if there is a history of it in the family. Patients who have previously been diagnosed with breast cancer in one breast are more likely to develop the cancer in the other breast. Since ovarian cancer is associated with hormone use, a history of ovarian cancer increases the risk of breast cancer, too. 
  • BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations: These gene mutations are associated with an increased risk of developing breast cancer.   
  • Exposure to the hormone oestrogen: The female sex hormone oestrogen induces female characteristics, extended exposure to which can increase the risk of breast cancer.
  • Lifestyle factors: Obesity, lack of exercise, drinking alcohol and exposure to high radiation.


In some cases, women with breast cancer may have no symptoms, and some abnormalities they experience may not be cancerous. However, it is important to seek medical attention when the following symptoms appear:

  • Lump or thickening in the breast or armpit
  • Nipple becoming dimpled, discharge from the nipple, or an ulcer on the nipple
  • Red rash on the breast, with the appearance of orange peel 
  • Breast pain

Breast Cancer Screening

These following procedures, which also increase the chances of successful treatment, can be performed for the early detection of breast cancer:

  • Self-examination
  • Mammogram: Recommended for women aged 40 and older every one to two years
  • Ultrasound and MRI: If a mammogram examination shows an abnormality, ultrasound or MRI may be used to confirm the diagnosis.


A diagnosis is performed when an abnormal lump is found (from self-examination or X-ray) or a tiny speck of calcium is seen (on an X-ray). After a suspicious lump is discovered, the doctor will diagnose whether it’s cancerous and if it has spread to other parts of the body. The most accurate method of diagnosis is a biopsy. However, if that’s not possible, the doctor will use an alternative test. 
The method of cancer diagnosis varies depending on several factors, such as age, current medications, type of cancer, severity of symptoms and earlier test results. Diagnosis can be performed in the following ways:

  • Diagnostic radiology
  • Diagnostic mammography
  • Ultrasound
  • MRI
  • Biopsy
  • Surgical pathology
  • Blood test
  • Additional tests
  • Chest X-ray
  • Bone scan
  • CT scan to generate 3D images of the organs to check for the spread of cancer


Treatment requires a multidisciplinary team of physicians, including surgeons, radiologists and cancer specialists, who together make the most suitable treatment plan for each individual patient. The doctors will make their decision based on the following factors:

  • Size, location and characteristics of the cancer cells
  • Stage and spread of the disease 
  • Age and health of the patient
  • Hormone receptors
  • Pre- or post-menopause  
  • Factors indicating disease severity, such as the HER2 gene

Treatment Options 

  • Surgery  
  • Radiotherapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Hormonal therapy
  • Targeted therapy

Taking place annually throughout the month of October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month aims to raise awareness about the disease and funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure.
Middle East Hospital has customised special breast cancer screening packages for women below and above 40 years.

 Call Middle East Hospital – Segaya on 17 362-233 or follow Instagram @mehgroup.