Begum Samina Arif Alvi has said that Breast Cancer is the most common form of cancer found in women, adding that 90 thousand cases of breast cancer are being reported in Pakistan every year.
She said that almost 50% of breast cancer patients in Pakistan died due to late diagnosis, adding that the mortality rate could be reduced by creating awareness among women about its early symptoms, and conducting self-examination for every five minutes every month.
She made these remarks during a Breast Cancer Awareness Seminar organized by Memon Professional forum in Karachi, today. The event was attended by breast cancer survivors who shared their stories with the audience, doctors, medical students, and women from different walks of life.
Addressing the occasion, Begum Samina said that awareness sessions regarding breast cancer should not be confined to the month of October. It is our responsibility to make people aware of its symptoms, diagnosis and the importance of monthly self-examination, she added.
She further said that as per medical experts, the 5-year survival rates at the 3rd and 4th stages were 86% and 28% respectively, which meant that chances of surviving breast cancer were quite high provided it was detected at the earliest stages.
She further said that women should inculcate the habit of self-examination and if they notice any lump or unusual change in their breasts or surrounding areas, they should immediately seek medical help.
Begum Alvi highlighted that she had been working for this cause for the past four years, and due to the grace of Allah Almighty, the awareness campaign had started yielding results.
She said that the number of breast cancer cases at the earliest stages had almost doubled in different hospitals in the country due to awareness and an increase in reporting.
She appreciated the professional organizations like Memon Professional Forum which were taking lead and contributing towards this noble cause with all their resources.
Later, survivors of breast cancer also shared their stories and how they managed to win the battle against breast cancer. Further, the panel included notable speakers who praised Begum Samina Alvi for her noteworthy efforts since 2018 in leading the campaign on breast cancer awareness. Dr Rufina Soomro from Liaquat National Hospital and Medica College also gave a detailed presentation on the topic.