WOMEN in Tameside and Glossop aged over 70 are being urged to check for signs of breast cancer to help halt the disease.
Public Health England is launching its Be Clear on Cancer campaign to raise awareness of the risk of breast cancer in older women.
It reinforces the message that “one in three women who get breast cancer are over 70 – so don’t assume you’re past it.”
A series of adverts state that a lump isn’t the only sign of breast cancer and urge women over 70 to tell their doctor if they notice any changes to their breasts as finding it earlier makes it more treatable.
It's important to get to know how your breasts look and feel normally so you'll find it easier to spot something unusual. Possible signs of breast cancer include: a lump or thickening in your breast or armpit; change to the skin, shape or size of your breast; nipple changes or discharge; pain in your breast; and any other unusual or persistent changes to your breast.
Cancer is the leading cause of premature death in Tameside and Glossop with a relatively high number of cancers detected late, and consequently reduced survival rates, compared to the England average.
Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers in the UK with one in eight women and one in 870 men being diagnosed.
Tameside and Glossop’s health leaders are backing the campaign to ensure more local women over 70 are aware of the facts.
Dr Jamie Douglas, NHS Tameside and Glossop CCG Governing Body member for Ageing Well, said: “It's important to carry on checking your breasts as you get older because the chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer increases with age. Women over 70 are more likely to delay presenting to their GP with breast cancer, which could ultimately affect their chance of survival. The earlier it's caught the better, so know the symptoms, and don't be afraid to visit your doctor if you are concerned about any potential signs.”
Tameside Council’s director of public health, Angela Hardman, said: “You are never too old to get breast cancer. Spotting the signs of cancer early is very important so if women are concerned about any breast cancer symptoms they should contact their GP straight away.”