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American Cancer Society: The Facts

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Five Things to Tell Your Friends

  1. All women are at risk for breast cancer, even those with no family history of the disease.
  2. The two greatest risk factors for breast cancer are being a woman and growing older.
  3. Survival rates are high for women diagnosed with an early stage breast cancer, when the cancer is small and has not spread. Get regular mammograms beginning at age 40, and start clinical breast exams by your doctor at age 20. Monthly breast self-examinations are also recommended.
  4. Smart strategies to reduce your risk of breast cancer include regular physical activity, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting alcohol intake.
  5. As women are becoming more educated about breast cancer, death rates for the disease are dropping.

U.S. Breast Cancer Facts

  • An estimated 226,870 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012
  • An estimated 39,920 women will die from the disease in 2012
  • Breast cancer death rates have decreased by 32 percent between 1990 and 2008 (the most recent data available). This means that in 2008, women had a 32 percent lower risk of dying from breast cancer than in 1990.
  • More than 147,000 breast cancer deaths have been prevented since death rates began dropping in 1990.

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