BREAST CANCER: Pernambuco records 48,200 mammograms in 2022 alone

A nightmare for many women, breast cancer can be detected early through self-examination and periodic clinical examinations. In the state of Pernambuco, 48,200 mammograms have already been carried out in the units of the Unified Health System (SUS) in 2022. Of these examinations, 7,900 were high risk and women will have to undergo additional examinations.

According to data from the National Cancer System (SISCAN), in the first five months of 2022, more than 942,000 tests were performed across the country. For those who have been diagnosed, the SUS has 317 qualified cancer treatment units and assistance centers.

Between 2020 and 2021, the Ministry of Health has invested more than BRL 196.7 million in 4.5 million mammograms for disease diagnosis and screening as part of primary health care (PHC) services. It has invested more than R$5.7 million in 6,500 breast reconstructions and allocated more than R$10.5 million in 25,100 surgeries for the treatment of breast cancer.

According to the Cancer Information System (SISCAN), in 2020, the SUS performed about 1.8 million mammograms in the country. In 2021, that number grew to over 2.6 million, an increase of 44.44%.

The National Cancer Institute (Inca) estimates the incidence of 66,000 new cases of breast cancer per year in Brazil. This is why it is very important that women do self-examinations and periodic examinations in the Basic Health Units. Like other types of cancer, early detection is key to successful treatment.

Monthly self-exams should start early, from age 20, because regardless of family history, breast cancer can affect women of all age groups. It is important to point out that the breasts can be swollen before and during the menstrual period, and the examination is recommended seven days after the start of the menstrual flow. Self-examination is also indicated during menopause.

From the age of 40, a simple breast examination is carried out annually. Simply search for an SUS health unit to schedule the appointment. The exam consists of a physical test in which a nurse or primary care physician carefully palpates the breasts, armpits, neck, and chest to identify early lumps and order specific clinical tests.

Every two years, women between the ages of 50 and 69 should have a mammogram and a breast ultrasound.

“Breast cancer takes 6 to 10 years to reach the size of one centimeter, the equivalent of a marble. But from there, it grows quickly. There are cases of patients arriving here with advanced cancer, at risk of losing their breasts or dying. That is why it is important for women to have clinical examinations with mammography”, guides the mastologist and director-president of the Amazonas Oncology Control Center Foundation (FCecon), Gerson Mourão.

all the attention

Main gateway to the SUS, primary health care promotes individual, family and collective health actions to prevent breast cancer. Specific clinical tests such as blood tests, cholesterol, mammography, and breast ultrasound are only done upon referral from primary care.

In addition to calling for screening mammography as a method of early detection of breast cancer, the issue of the signs and symptoms of breast cancer in women is also discussed, as well as forms of primary prevention, such as encouraging the practice of physical activity. , the maintenance of a healthy weight, of an adequate and healthy diet, also rich in natural foods, low in intra-processed foods”, underlines the general coordinator for the prevention of chronic diseases and the fight against tobacco, Patrícia Izetti.

The cancer centers are part of the SUS network and also offer free preclinical examinations for breast cancer. Check the list of accredited hospitals on the Inca website, find the Basic Health Unit (UBS) closest to your residence, or find your state health department for more information.

BREAST CANCER: Signs and Symptoms (Source: Inca)

● Nodule (lump), fixed and generally painless: this is the main manifestation of the disease, being present in approximately 90% of cases when the cancer is observed by the woman herself;
● Reddened, retracted or orange-peel skin on the breast;
● Changes in the nipple (nipple);
● Small lumps in armpits or neck;
● Spontaneous discharge of abnormal fluid from the nipples.

For more information, visit the Ministry of Health website: Or contact the Pernambuco State Health Department, by phone (81) 3184-0104.

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