Breast Cancer in Men


In recent months, I have noticed there has been an increase in the number of adverts on television fundraising for breast cancer. This may sound inappropriate but I find so many faults with these adverts. For a start they are focused on women and all pretty and pink. The first thought that goes through my mind is WHAT ABOUT THE MEN! Have these breast cancer charities forgotten that men too can get breast cancer?

Let me try and justify what I am trying to say. Breast cancer is an incredibly sensitive subject and many of us will be able to relate in some way so I don't want to offend anyone. Let's take Race for Life which consists of several physical events to raise money for all types of cancer. But it's only open to women. I don't understand why this is and why men are excluded, shouldn't we all come together and support one another? There are ways in which men can be involved in Race for Life, I'm not suggesting women should have to take part in the events alongside men, they can still have their women only events. I'm suggesting why don't Race for Life introduce men only events?

Next up is Tickled Pink which is ran by ASDA. Often there are some clothing items which you can purchase by the George range whereby money goes to Breast Cancer Care and Breast Cancer Now charities. But the colour Pink suggests breast cancer is for women. My point is several campaigns fail to acknowledge breast cancer in men. Another simple solution to the Tickled Pink initiative would be to introduce "Tickled Blue" and introduce clothing from the men's section which can raise money for Breast Cancer. Tesco and ASDA are the two biggest supermarkets in the UK and both fail to bring awareness to breast cancer in men.

According to the NHS "It's much less common in men than women, with only 1 new case of breast cancer diagnosed for every 100,000 men (about 350 to 400 cases) in the UK each year". When I read these statistics I believe it portrays breast cancer in men as less important and not as much of a big deal. As an example, if I did notice something around my breast tissue the first thing I would do is look up the symptoms online and if I read that statistic I would feel reassured and made to think I would be silly to worry about it because it's "less common" so chances are it's nothing. Therefore, I would make no attempt to get it checked by a healthcare professional.

I can't help but think that actually there are THOUSANDS of undiagnosed cases of breast cancer in men every year it's just men don't seek help and visit doctors or too afraid to speak out if they find something unusual. Men tend to brush things off and turn a blind eye to many things, especially health. Surely, if there was more awareness of breast cancer in men then more men would be looking for any signs and visiting their doctor for advice.

Obviously men have much less breast tissue than women so there is much less to feel and check. Therefore, it's arguably more difficult to notice, the most common sign of breast cancer in men is a hard, painless lump in one of the breasts.

I want to challenge Tesco and ASDA and other people who are in a powerful position who can get their voices heard to acknowledge breast cancer in men. Let's stand together, men and women side by side and BEAT CANCER TOGETHER!

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