Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide, with nearly 1.7 million new cases diagnosed in 2012 (second most common cancer overall).
This represents about 12 percent of all new cancer cases and 25 percent of all cancers in women.
Breast cancer is hormone related and the factors that modify the risk of this cancer when diagnosed premenopausally and when diagnosed (much more commonly) postmenopausally are not the same.
The Continuous Update Project Panel judged that for premenopausal breast cancer, there was convincing evidence that consuming alcoholic drinks increases the risk of this cancer and lactation protects against it.
Adult attained height and greater birth weight are probably causes of this cancer and body fatness probably protects against this cancer.
The Panel judged that for postmenopausal breast cancer there was convincing evidence that consuming alcoholic drinks, body fatness and adult attained height increase the risk of this cancer and lactation protects against it.
Abdominal fatness and adult weight gain are probably causes of this cancer and physical activity probably protects against it.
Meanwhile, First Lady of Kenya Margaret Kenyatta recently said Africa has the capacity and resources to contain cancer if the continent unites against the monster.
She said the gains made by the Stop Cervical, Breast and Prostrate Cancer in Africa (SCCA) initiative over the last decade is a demonstration that the battle against the disease can eventually be won.
“I am convinced more than ever that we have all the resources we need to make a radical difference in Africa’s healthcare, and to ensure that cancer does not continue to be the dominant cause of death in the developing world”, said the First Lady.
She spoke at the African Union Commission headquarters in Addis Ababa during a SCCA three-day conference.
“We have the power and the purpose, the wisdom and the will, the ability and the empathy, to make a lasting difference. We can have a continent, where cancer does not cripple us and a world where we beat cancer”, she said.
The First Lady was confident that Africa can build a stronger and healthier continent where boys and girls, women and men are protected from cancer if the continent exploits all its potential.
The SCCA movement marked its 10th anniversary. The theme of the conference is: “A Decade of accomplishments, our enduring legacies and challenges ahead”.