October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

(Radio Iowa) – A hospital in Cedar Rapids is bathed in pink lights at night, the Drake University women’s soccer team will host a “Pink Night” at its match tonight, and pink ribbons adorn many Iowans’ lapels.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Chuck Reed, at the American Cancer Society’s Des Moines chapter, says the disease is a killer, but it doesn’t have to be.  “In Iowa this year, more than 2,300 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, roughly 400 women will die from breast cancer,” Reed says. “One woman every four hours of every day hears those words, ‘You have breast cancer.’”

Promotions across the state this month are designed to urge women to get regular mamograms and checkups. “The five-year survival rate for breast cancer is about 90%,” Reed says. “If you stay on top of your breast health, talk to your doctor, get your screenings and do all the things you’re supposed to do, you don’t have to be one of those 400 women who will die from breast cancer in Iowa this year.”

For women who may need financial help in getting screenings, he suggest the “Iowa Care For Yourself” program through the Iowa Department of Public Health. For details, visit:  www.idph.state.ia.us/CFY/