Buddy Check9 focuses on breast cancer this month.

The Numbers

3,840 Colorado women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017[1], which equals…

o One woman will be diagnosed with breast cancer every 2.3 hours in Colorado in 2017 – or 10 women a day. [2]

o 320 women diagnosed every month in 2017.

o Each week in Colorado, 74 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

The five year relative survival rate when breast cancer is diagnosed at an advanced stage is just 26 percent - compared to 99 percent when breast cancer is detected early and confined to the breast.

Death in Colorado

570 women in Colorado will die from breast cancer in 2017, which equals…

o 11 women in Colorado will die from breast cancer each week

o 48 women will die every month in Colorado from the disease

Survivors in Colorado

In 2017, there are more than 68,000 breast cancer survivors or women who are living with the disease in Colorado.[3]


It’s important to know how your breasts normally look and feel so you know if anything is different, but knowing what to look for does not take the place of regular screening tests. The most common symptom is a new mass or lump. Other symptoms may include:

● Breast or nipple pain

● Swelling in the breast (even if no lump is felt)

● Skin irritation or dimpling

● Redness, scaliness, or thickening of the nipple or breast skin

● Nipple retraction (turning inward)

● Nipple discharge (other than breast milk)

For more information visit https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/about/breast-cancer-signs-and-symptoms.html

Risk Factors

Some risk factors for breast cancer that can be controlled include drinking alcohol, being overweight or obese, and not being physically active.

Risk factors for breast cancer that cannot change include being a woman (though men can also get breast cancer), getting older, and having a family history of breast cancer. Having a first degree relative with breast cancer (mother, sister or daughter) almost doubles a woman’s risk.

Steps that women can take to lower their breast cancer risk include getting to and maintaining a healthy weight, being physically active, and limiting or avoiding alcohol.

For more information visit https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/risk-and-prevention.html

Screening Guidelines

The American Cancer Society breast cancer screening guideline supports mammography at age 40-44 if a woman decides it is right for her. These guidelines are for women at average risk.

● At age 40, women should start having a discussion with their doctor about breast cancer screening.

● By age 45, all women should begin annual breast cancer screening. At 55, women can switch to screening every other year, or continue with annual screening.

For women at high risk, including those with a strong personal or family history, they should make a decision about screening with the help of a health care provider.

For details on screening visit https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/screening-tests-and-early-detection/american-cancer-society-recommendations-for-the-early-detection-of-breast-cancer.html

Screening locations low or no-cost clinical breast exams, screening mammograms and diagnostic services to medically underserved individuals http://www.komencolorado.org/grants-program/grant-recipients/


American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk

Sunday, October 22

Village Center Station, 6363 S. Fiddlers Green Circle in Greenwood Village

Registration: 8 am

Walk: 9:30 am

Visit http://MakingStridesWalk.org/Denver for details and to sign-up

Real Men Wear Pink

Men from across the community are taking a stand against breast cancer and raising funds and awareness for the American Cancer Society as part of the Real Men Wear Pink campaign.Each Real Men Wear Pink candidate is charged with a fundraising challenge and competes to be the top fundraiser among the other candidates by the end of the campaign. The men will also wear pink during October. For details visit http://www.makingstrideswalk.org/RealMenDenverMetroCO

Support Groups

Friends for Life - Cherry Hills Community Church - 7-9 pm 1st Thursday of the month

We call ourselves "Friends For Life" because we are. Join us to share stories, hopes and fears about our breast cancer experiences. Meetings include information and discussion about treatment options. Anything discussed remains confidential.

Jeanne Fountain at 303.888.3627


Breast Cancer Support Group - UCHealth Anschutz Pavilion

This group will focus on providing emotional and social support with the goal of reducing stress and improving quality of life.

Group meets the first Tuesday of the month from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Anschutz Outpatient Pavilion, Room 2005.

Social Media Posts

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Learn how you can get involved in the fight against breast cancer https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/five-ways-to-fight-breast-cancer.html

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with breast cancer, the American Cancer Society can help. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer.html

Getting called back after a mammogram can be scary, but it doesn’t have to be. Find out what to expect. https://www.cancer.org/latest-news/if-youre-called-back-after-a-mammogram.html

Interesting Facts

The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2017 nationwide, 2,470 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 460 men will die from the disease.

Thanks to improvements in early detection and treatment, the female breast cancer death rate has declined by 38 percent from its peak in 1989 to 2014. That translates to 297,300 fewer deaths from breast cancer.

Thank you to the Colorado Cancer Coalition for information that was used in this article. The Colorado Cancer Coalition is a statewide collaborative working to eliminate the burden of cancer in Colorado. Our task forces and members work together to improve the life of all Coloradans touched by cancer. To learn more go to http://www.coloradocancercoalition.org. The Colorado Cancer Coalition is a sponsored project of the Trailhead Institute, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the public's health and the environment in Colorado and the Rocky Mountain region.

Thank you to the American Cancer Society for contributing information that was used in this article. For cancer information and resources, contact the American Cancer Society 24 hours a day at 1-800-227-2345 or visit www.cancer.org. The Society’s mission is to save lives, celebrate lives, and lead the fight for a world without cancer.

[1] American Cancer Society 2017 Cancer Facts & Figures

[2] 3,840 diagnoses per 365 days in 2017 x 24 hours/day

[3] Colorado Central Cancer Registry estimate that 68,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer in Colorado between 1979 and 2015 are alive as of January 1, 2016.