Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Women's health issues

Last Thursday I received a call, the radiologist had found a problem with my mammogram and I needed additional scans and possibly an ultra-sound scan. I went yesterday and thank god everything was fine and I have no problem. My best friend who lives near D.C. is not so lucky and she still faces a daily battle dealing with the effects of breast cancer. Please get your annual mammogram and do monthly breast self exam (BSE). If you take the pill start doing self exams I discovered my first benign lump in my 20s when I was taking birth control pills. One out of every 8 women will get breast cancer in the course of a 90-year life span.

What Can Make Your Risk for Breast Cancer Go Down?
Eating a healthy diet, losing extra weight, regular exercise, reducing alcohol use, quitting smoking, and minimizing/eliminating extra estrogen.

What Can Make Your Risk for Breast Cancer Go Up?
Personal or family history of breast cancer, smoking, excessive weight, prolonged estrogen exposure, abnormal breast cell growth, first full-term pregnancy after age 30, never having a full-term pregnancy, heavy alcohol use, early start of menstruation, late menopause.

Another friend was just diagnosed with endometrial cancer . Endometrial cancer is one of the most common cancers in American women. In fact, about 40,000 American women receive a diagnosis of endometrial cancer each year, making it the fourth most common cancer found in women — after breast cancer, lung cancer and colon cancer.

ALCOHOL—IS AN IMPORTANT WOMEN’S HEALTH ISSUE: While it’s true that men are more likely to drink alcohol and more likely to drink greater amounts, women have a higher risk of developing problems from alcohol consumption. When a woman drinks, the alcohol in her bloodstream typically reaches a higher level than a man’s even if both are drinking the same amount. This is because women’s bodies generally have less water than men’s bodies. Because alcohol mixes with body water, a given amount of alcohol is less diluted in a woman’s body than in a man’s. Women become more impaired by alcohol’s effects and are more susceptible to alcohol–related organ damage. That is, women develop damage at lower levels of consumption over a shorter period of time.

And there are significant diferences between men and women when it comes to health. Just the Facts: Differences between the sexes exist and whether a person is male or female matters in the prevalence and severity of a broad range of diseases, disorders, and conditions. It matters at every stage of life - from the very beginning to the very end. It matters at every level - from the single cell to the entire body. Women and Men: 10 differences that make a difference When it comes to health, there are many crucial health differences between men and women. Yet many women do not know that they react differently to some medications, are more vulnerable to some diseases, and may have different symptoms.

And most important please feel good about who you are BODY IMAGE: Are you imagining the wrong body? In general, women seem more dissatisfied with their appearance than men. Women most commonly complain about their thighs, abdomen, breast, and buttocks while men are dissatisfied with their abdomen, upper body, and balding hair. Sometimes, the problem is imaginary, such as the runner who complains about her fat thighs, or the bikini wearer whose stomach is not absolutely flat. Sometimes, the problem is real and ranges from a mild complaint about cellulite to a major preoccupation with "thunder thighs" that results in relentless dieting and exercise akin to punishment.


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