The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Breast Cancer Awareness Lunch and Learn

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November 3, 2019 | Katia Snyder | reporter

Diane Alvarado, staff administrator for the Health Clinic Center of NW campus, spearheaded a special Breast Cancer Awareness Lunch and Learn event by inviting students, faculty and community members to expand their knowledge of breast cancer — on October 10 on NW campus.

Alvarado, who plans the annual event, said she was “very excited for the new speaker:” Bibas Reddy, a MPH medical oncologist at the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders.

Reddy discussed the myths and truths about breast cancer and how it can affect one’s life and families.

Reddy started his talk by presenting the audience with a selection of facts including that breast cancer death rates are declining as more patients, and their doctors, are catching it early on.

Still another fact shared by Reddy is that 12 out of 100 women in the general population are at risk of contracting breast cancer. In addition, men are at risk — though at a lesser rate — of suffering from breast cancer. l

Reddy provided some key breast cancer warning signs to look out for. They include general discharges, skin changes including dimples, and nipple retraction.

“Lumps on the breast is the most common sign of breast cancer,” Reddy said.

He also detailed several ways one can reduce the risk of breast cancer, including exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting alcohol consumption. He also advised avoiding using a combination of hormone replacement therapy in addition to unnecessary medical radiation exposure.

The most important lifestyle habit to cut out is smoking, according to Reddy, who also suggested that it would be advisable to get regular mammograms after age 30 while seeing a personal physician regularly.

“It’s all about raising awareness,” Reddy emphasized.

Several of the students and staff in attendance asked Reddy to clarify certain  cancer-related risks they had seen raised in various online and other news accounts — especially concerning the overuse of cell phones, or using water bottles in a hot car.

Reddy explained that he was unaware of any supporting evidence or studies that proving these to accounts to be true or verifiable. Reddy did allow that some of those situations might lead to other cancers but have not been linked specifically to breast cancer.

Daisy Agustin is a sophomore at NW campus and her sister, Kit-Kat, was diagnosed with breast cancer. She recently received encouraging news that her sister’s treatment was working.

“It’s scary how it doesn’t just have to be in genetics — anyone can get it,” Agustin said.

Also attending the event was Alexis Gapinski, a NW sophomore and nursing major.

”The only person who can save you is you,” Gapinski said. “Diane Alvarado did such a wonderful job on this event and Bibas Reddy did fantastic on his speech. Many students and faculty left the event with so much knowledge about breast cancer and a stomach full of food.”

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