A medical expert, Dr Olaniyi Johnson has said that 7.8 million women diagnosed with breast cancer still lived past five years after diagnosis.
Speaking during this year’s World Cancer Survival Month organised by Breasts Cancer Association of Nigeria (BRECAN) BRECAN in Akure, the Ondo State capital, Olaniyi declared that the disease “is not a death sentence “.
Dr Olaniyi is the outgoing Vice Chairperson of the Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria (BRECAN) in Ondo state.
In his presentation entitled “Cancer Is Not A Death Sentence”,, the State Vice Chairperson, Olaniyi pointed out that “cancer is not a death sentence as statistics has shown that by the end of 2020, 7.8million women diagnosed with breast cancer still lived past five years which goes to show that cancer is not a death sentence.
READ ALSO: Breast cancer, not death sentence, 7.8m women diagnosed still alive five years after — Medical expert
Olaniyi emphasised the need for women to be involved in regular medical check-ups, engaging in Breast Self Examination (BSE), clinical examination, and mammography in a bid to detect the disease at the early stage.
As a preventive measures against cancer, the medical expert advised women to avoid smoking, excessive intake of alcohol, to limit stress by engaging in social interaction, regular physical exercise, and have good sleep.
He further enjoined women to allow prolonged breastfeeding and to avoid the use of hormonal drugs.
According to him, “I want to use this medium to say that breast cancer can be cured and it shouldn’t be seen as a death sentence once it is discovered early then it requires vaccination and frequent check up”.
“I also want to say that, people living with it should not be stigmatised as long as those living with malaria fever that kills faster are not stigmatised.”
The outgoing state chairman of BRECAN, Dr. Toyin Ayimoro explained that Team Survivor Nigeria (TSN), is an affiliate of BRECAN that takes care of the psychosocial aspect of breast cancer survivors.
According to her, the group comes together every month to share thoughts and do public education while also doing researches and providing support for cancer patients.
Ayimoro said “the wife of the state governor, Betty-Anyanwu Akeredolu who founded BRECAN over 24 years ago, gathered survivors under TSN in 2018 to share their experiences with the public to serve as hope for victims of breast cancer that the disease is not a death sentence.
She said that “TSN has about 30 members that have been collaborating with BRECAN to create awareness, conduct researches and provide support for patients across Nigeria.
“June is a special month for us in BRECAN; it is a period we celebrate our survivors. Team Survivor Nigeria is an association that takes care of the psychosocial aspect of survivors and fighters of Breast Cancer.
“It is important to let you know that the Team Survivor Nigeria is a formidable force, they come together every month to hold meeting; this team has been in support of BRECAN ever since it came on board and so today we want to celebrate them because we share out of their pains.
“Breast Cancer is a disease that doesn’t kill especially if it’s discovered very early and that is why we do say that early detection saves life. This is the reason we are coming together again today to tell you that there is hope.
” I can tell you boldly that today in Ondo State many are now aware of breast cancer because we give hope and save lives in BRECAN and TSN”.
The outgoing state secretary of BRECAN, Dr. Emmanuel Onyeama said that stigmatisation can kill faster than the disease itself if victims are not given moral support, noting that the trauma and physical changes they experience during treatment can be frustrating.
show love to cancer patients as against stigmatising them.
Ijalade who said she was diagnosed three years ago noted that she recently gave birth yo twins.
According to her ” l am a living proof. Am still living after chemotherapy l gave birth to twins. Early detection is the only solution. There’s still hope if you go for treatment.
On her part, Mrs Cecilia Oso who said she was diagnosed eight years ago spoke against societal stigmatisation
According to her “societal stigma should be discouraged, its not infectious.
If you have it its not a death sentence.
Visit hospital, remove the lump and move on with your life. Staying at home is not the solution, go for treatment, cancer is treatable and not a death sentence.
They lauded the wife of the governor for taking care of breast cancer patients and survivors noting that many lives have been saved through her pet program- BRECAN established to cater for affected women.