Let’s talk– Part I–
Our health is more than once a year during October walk, run and wearing pink. It is supporting families who may have lost a loved one, still battling, or survived, and raising more funds for research to find a cure.
October is also when countless women gathered in pink across the globe from all races, cultures, and economic backgrounds to educate the public through multiple awareness platforms.
It is not about girls’ power-grabbing, as one friend expressed. Simply put, it is to eliminate a silent killer called, “Breast Cancer, and men get it too.”
Cancer remains a personal issue and not a water cooler conversation, and I believe more men must establish a bond to educate themselves about their medical problems.
This issue does not need waiting until a prominent person comes forward to take a closer look at our bodies- (man’s parts).
When the “Me-Too” movement against sexual harassment and assaults gained traction, many men surrendered their influential positions. Some went silent, and it convicted a few for their terrible behavior. Although some denied and minimized their actions; what this topic has achieved, it created more awareness.
But irrespective of the opinions made; “consciousness” is key in any society to develop new road maps for a more adequate quality standard of living that include; physical health, family, education, employment, wealth, freedom, environment, and safety.
This silent killer affects dudes too
Awareness is key in any civilized society that often led to significant changes, and we should collaboratively develop an understanding of ourselves in many areas.
Even though male breast cancer is very rare, medical reports have shown that around 350 males are diagnosed each year and it is also affecting adolescents and not only men between ages 60 and 70. Early detection remains the key and essential examinations might save lives.
Because men do not wear a bra or have breasts like women, it does not eliminate men from getting breast cancer, and this stigma must be debunked.
It is a malignant tumor that starts from cells of the breast, according to medical experts. “A malignant tumor is a group of cancer cells that may invade surrounding tissues or metastasize to other areas of the body.”
If you are reading this opinion, I am not a celebrity who was diagnosed with the disease to influence a doctor’s visit within the next 24 hours. However, I have family members and a friend of a friend, who died from this disease.
Part II – Know the signs and ask questions
Sadly, if you have less access to a good and affordable health care system, changes are you may be one of several families still searching for answers as to the exact cause of death for a loved one.
The medical profession classifies breast cancer symptoms as, “swelling of nipples, discharge, rashes around the boob. It is also where millions of cells and hormones are found in boys and girls during puberty, swelling of the chest area or lymph nodes under the arms.
Frequently, when some patients realized this disease, it has already entered its terminal stage. Not everyone possesses the financial means to leave their local communities to get excellent treatment.
Simply replacing the word “Women Issues” with “Men Issues,” predominantly black men, several other social-economic topics will dominate like, criminal justice, higher unemployment rate, poverty, violence, less access to healthcare. Nevertheless, like many subjects today, it starts with awareness.
According to the International Journal of Caring Science and other leading oncologic care studies, males are at a more minimal risk than women for breast cancer. However, it remains high, especially for men with a history of the testicular complaint, and ones with a genetic predisposition, radiation, excessive alcohol use, liver disease, and obesity.”
Scholars additionally noted that cancer was associated with and considered as a “lady” disease which affected their woman’s parts, the breast, and womb.” And that belief remains a dangerous weapon against one’s health issues.
Often beneath that tough-guy image, he needs your support. Few men would openly admit they relied on Viagra for sexual dysfunction because self-confidence was as important as his influence. This attitude sometimes forces some from visiting even women doctors or to take part in pink or a walk to generate more awareness.
Quietly, tackling men’s breast cancer and other medical issues remains a taboo woven in social stratification, illiteracy, and medical disparities
Many leading Cancer Society lists a few basic questions your doctors should ask:
- Do you have breast pain?
- Do you have a lump?
- Nipple retraction, or skin changes?
How equipped is your doctor?
How knowledgeable is your doctor?
Where he or she received their training?
The success rate of treating this disease or any other?
Collaboration with other practitioners?
Do you have an external evaluation of your labs?
The International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) has developed standards that many countries have adopted, and some of these rural facilities could implement more rigorous oversights along these shores in the delivery of competence services.
The Center for Disease and Control (CDC) report that people of color suffer from a more elevated rate of being affected by this disease including other cancers.
Part III- Access to good and affordable health care saves lives
The ongoing debates between cost and quality of care, and how many patients’ life savings have been depleted by years of medical office visits without the precise answer?
In many communities today, access to proper healthcare remains a wall between the haves vs. have nots. The lack of social obligation by several elected leaders whose economic agenda in all political parties failed to confer inadequacies, and where under-funding of critical facilities only added more burden.
The lack of accountability, resources, and the sheer number of people in the care of one doctor, and the high cost of treatment to accurate referrals can also deter others from seeking medical attention. This erodes confidence for those who are still in the shadow.
In many poverty-stricken and developing countries, often distrust, distance to adequate facilities are like the high rate of unsolved crimes in a closed files. These patients frequently try alternative medicine, not only for breast cancer but other diseases.
Failing to recognize professional limitations can cause other barriers, such as correct medical equipment to diagnose these symptoms to well-trained staff is important. And they must address the idea of upfront payments before they can admit one. In addition, extended waiting period to be seen or admitted for treatment, why bother to show up,” one person argues.
Equally significant, an attestation that decent treatment is being administered should be more important than profit, as personal ethics should not conflict with care and accountability. Misdiagnosis or delayed treatment only creates more questions when one dies.
In these tragic events, many upset families left with questions. Many said they were abandoned by the system surrounding when a loved one dies. To prevent these medical erosions, it starts with an accurate analysis to make sure they provide precise answers to build confidence in many of these medical systems; especially in impoverished communities.
Today, many families are not exactly certain if it was cancer, heart attack, malpractice, diabetes, elevated blood pressure, or the prescribed medicine. As experts cautioned that some prescriptions can develop an addiction that may have led to the cause of death and not what is recorded on a death certificate.
In order prevent these medical erosions, it starts with an accurate analysis to make sure they provide correct answers.
Part IV– Building a brotherhood for early detection.
This very day, I believe that more men should pause; regarding their health, create a brotherhood to fight against breast cancer and other diseases that can provide a platform to engage and not isolate from fear.
Furthermore, create similar approaches, such as the one used to advance local political leaders’ agendas that often failed to address their needs and overall quality of life. Therefore, schedule an appointment with a knowledgeable physician.
Embrace even if today’s medical check will be carried out by a woman doctor. The local home-grown and self-medication may reduce symptoms, but it will not cure this disease, and many others men will face in our lifetime.
Male Breast Cancer – awareness and beyond the nipples
Men’s health, in general, will continue to endure challenges navigating the socio-economic divide, taboo, disparities distrust, and access, and breast cancer is not the only potential medical check that should be on your list this year:
This October and beyond, I urge people to take a stand for good health: Colon cancer, elevated blood pressure, diabetes, mental health, heart disease, and other illnesses.
Despite the barriers for people who are uninsured and are less likely to receive medical care and more likely to have poor health status, as studies have shown, there are few excellent physicians tucked away in many small communities.
They may be limited because of resources, but they play a critical role where early detection that is critical in saving lives, and unnecessary financial burden often when it is too late to reverse course.
Finally, allow the doctor to acknowledge your concerns even if it only makes up a psychological intervention until the next exam.
The next Father’s Day gift may be to accompany a loved one to the doctor.
Regardless of socio-economic status, race, culture, religious belief, gander, location, we are all linked and cancer does not discriminate.