Breast cancer everyone’s problem

Published 1:47pm Tuesday, October 25, 2011

When we first had a meeting about this special edition of the Shelby County Reporter to honor those who are fighting and have fought breast cancer, we knew we needed an extremely strong story and subject for the front page.

As soon as we walked back into the newsroom, our reporter Christine Boatwright told us some big news: she had talked to a woman whose husband was a breast cancer survivor, and Boatwright thought the two might be willing to share their story.

Immediately, all of us on the editorial board knew that was a powerful story, one that needed to be featured in this edition.

These days, breast cancer is viewed through the prism of a pink ribbon; although intentions are always good, it’s hard not to think of breast cancer as a woman’s disease.

While breast cancer is a rare cancer in men, there are certain risk factors for which men should watch. These factors include a family history of breast cancer, radiation exposure, heavy alcohol intake, aging and obesity. Any man who sees or feels a breast lump should immediately consult a physician.

Women are the vast majority of breast cancer sufferers, so it’s important that women do everything possible to prevent breast cancer. For women, these steps include getting screened for breast cancer regularly, controlling weight, exercising, knowing of any family history of breast cancer and limiting alcohol intake.

Through Boatwright’s story of Bobby Kemp and his struggle with two types of cancer, we found a way to make sure our readers understand that cancer, in any form, is everyone’s problem.

The We Say is the opinion of the Shelby County Reporter editorial board.

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