Fact vs Fiction - The Breast Cancer Edition

By Lifeline Hospital, Health & Wellness Partner


Lifeline Hospital
Health & Wellness Partner

February 05, 2019

WARNING: This may blow your mind and question everything you know about breast cancer. Read on!

It’s high time to go beyond just being aware and to now take action. We live in an age where you can get information anywhere – sometimes the wrong kind. Let’s look past all the pinkness and debunk some of those myths.

The Story: Majority of breast cancer cases are caused by family history.

In Truth: Only 5-10% are hereditary where the abnormal gene gets passed from parent to child. The other 90% of cases are due to environmental factors and lifestyle.

The Story: You can’t do anything that lowers your risk of developing breast cancer.

In Truth: As mentioned above, a large majority of cases are based on your lifestyle. You can reduce your risks by eating healthy, exercising regularly, avoiding toxins (alcohol, smoking, etc.) self-checks and getting regular check-ups with your gynecologist.

The Story: Wearing a bra can cause you to develop breast cancer.

In Truth: There is no link. Bra, no bra, there is no real difference. A scientific study was done to check and found that there was no direct relation. 

The Story: Getting a regular mammogram will prevent breast cancer.

In Truth: A mammogram is an x-ray, not a treatment. While it doesn’t provide a cure, getting it done regularly can save your life through early detection when the cancer is more treatable.

The Story: Mammogram radiation can cause breast cancer to spread.

In Truth: While there is some radiation, the amount doesn’t pose any harm. According to the National Cancer Institute, “The benefits of mammography, however, nearly always outweigh the potential harm from radiation exposure. Mammograms require very small doses of radiation. The risk of harm from this radiation exposure is extremely low.”

The Story: Antiperspirants (deodorants) can cause breast cancer:

In Truth: There is no relation. Whatever you’ve heard about toxin buildup, clogged pores, aluminum exposure is not based on scientific evidence. Studies have been done and nothing has come up so far.

The Story: If you find a lump in your breast, it means you have cancer.

In Truth: Only a few lumps turn out to be cancer. The breasts go through changes all through your life whether it’s menstruation, pregnancy or menopause change is normal. But if you find a persist lump after having your period or pain or unusual changes, get checked by a gynecologist as soon as you can.

The Story: Men can’t get breast cancer.

In Truth: Men still have breasts. Albeit flat, they can still get breast cancer although the percentage is still significantly smaller compared to women.

Just for the record, these are just some of the rumors flying around but in the end, it’s up to you to educate yourself and spread the truth. When it comes to something as serious like cancer, there’s no room for false information. People’s lives are on the line – possibly yours. Visit a gynecologist and set the facts straight.

So how many of these myths have you heard about? How many did you know were fake? Do you know any more misconceptions about breast cancer? Share your thoughts in the comment’s section below!

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