In her nature of giving back to the community, the Pink Pearl Foundation train headed to Abia State to create awareness as well as offer free lecture and screening on breast and cervical cancer to women in the state.
Nene Ananaba, wife of the deputy governor who represented Mercy Odochi Orji, the first lady of Abia State, to flag off the event, witnessed Pink Pearl cyclists who rode round Umuahia, the state capital, distributing handbills on the importance of Breast Self-Examination (BSE) and the need for periodic medical check.
Speaking at the event, Onye Ubanatu, senior partner, Pink Pearl Foundation thanked women who came for the free screening as it was the right option giving the increasing incidence of cancers in the country.
Ubanatu said that late presentation of cancer in hospitals was due to ignorance, situation the association is trying to change through awareness and enlightenment.
“Planning integrated, evidence-based and cost effective interventions throughout the cancer continuum (from research to prevention, early detection, treatment, palliative care) is the most effective way to tackle the cancer problem and reduce the suffering caused to patients and their families” Ubanatu added.
For Uche Okwe, a clinical physician, the opportunity to get free lecture/screening in this present economy is very rare and so, the women should cherish what they are being given. While the dangers of breast and cervical cancer becoming a public health issue, Okwe noted that women need to go for regular mammography checkups and Breast Self-Examination (BSE).
“Breast cancer stages are also based on four characteristics such as the size of the cancer, whether the cancer is invasive or non-invasive, whether cancer is in the lymph nodes and whether the cancer has spread to other parts of the body beyond the breast. Women should take the following healthy lifestyle steps to decrease their chances of attracting the killer disease.
“Minimise or avoid alcohol. Alcohol use is the most well established dietary risk factor for breast cancer. Consume as many fruits and vegetables as possible. The superstar fruits include citrus, berries and cherries. It is best to eat cruciferous vegetables raw or lightly cooked, as some of the phytochemicals believed to offer protection against breast cancer are destroyed by heat. Exercise regularly,” she concluded.
A total of 107 women registered to be screened and 18 of these were either found with lump in their breasts or cervical lesions. Since its emergence in 2007, Pink Pearl Foundation has shown its dedication, determination, and assertiveness in eradicating breast and cervical cancer in Nigeria; creating awareness in every state in the country and launching over 40 programmes to support the cause against breast and cervical cancer.