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Breast cancer and early detection
Radiology is a branch of medicine that uses image techniques to diagnose and treat a disease. We call image techniques, those that by different methods, whether radiology, electromagnetic waves or ultrasonic waves, generate images of the body, their organs and their structures. Not only do they indicate if there is any morphological alteration but also indicates whether there is any functional alteration of the different organs. It has become a highly technological science where it has very sophisticated and complex teams, which require high training of professionals who work in it.
Although there has been concern about potentially harmful side effects associated with the use of radiation, it is widely demonstrated, that the benefits for the information obtained exceed the adverse effects of image techniques.
Radiology can be divided into two large areas, diagnostic radiology and therapeutic or interventionist radiology. From its origins, until today, techniques have evolved and perfecting over the years. Many of these techniques are used to detect breast cancer, the most used are: mammography, ultrasound and magnetic resonance. Image techniques for breast study are carried out, since today, it is the most frequent cancer among women around the world. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) breast cancer is the most common among women around the world, as it represents 16% of all female cancers. It is estimated that in 2004 519,000 women died due to breast cancer.
Today, breast cancer has a good survival, about 80% of diagnosed cases. This is due to detection in very early stages, very effective treatments and advances in treatments for the fight against disease.
For the detection of breast neoplasia, there are different diagnostic tests, but the most important is mammography, which can be completed with breast ultrasound and resonance in cases that mammography is not determining, for the evaluation of some anomalous finding in theMama, which may be due to malignant or benign neoplasia. Early detection remains the cornerstone of control of this type of cancer to improve the forecast and breast cancer survival. The methods for early detection can be two:
- The knowledge of the first symptoms and signs of the disease in the symptomatic population, to facilitate diagnosis and early treatment.
- Screening programs, which consist of the systematic realization of diagnostic tests in the seemingly asymptomatic population. The objective of these screening tests is to detect people who have anomalies that can indicate cancer.
Mammography is the only screening method that has demonstrated its effectiveness. If your coverage exceeds 70%, you can reduce breast cancer mortality by 20-30% in women over 50 years.
Regarding breast self-exploration there is no data on the cyber effect. It has been proposed as a screening proof but there is no evidence to reduce mortality despite the fact that in many occasions the diagnosis of cancer among women who had practiced self-exploration was carried out in more early stages. For breast self-exploration, instructions must be received as the technique, which will be reviewed in routine medical exams. Having to inform the doctor to detect any new symptom;Likewise, it must be informed about the potential benefits, limitations and losses (mainly the possibility of false positives).
In Spain, due to the large incidence of breast cancer cases and the public health problem, social security offers screening programs among the female population, which consists of a mammogram every two years and is aimed at women among50 and 69 years asymptomatic.
Therefore a shared criterion is: to make a self-exploration of the breasts, perform the controls that the professional indicates and finally go to the doctor in case of change of size or form of the breast, secretions, pain, redness, palpate a lump andnipple retraction among others.