Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Women urged to check for anything unusual around their breasts

Published: Monday, 28th October 2019

City Council Cabinet Member Louise Upton, who has personal experience with breast cancer, has urged women to be aware of the disease and remember to check for anything unusual in their breasts.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an international campaign seeking to increase breast cancer awareness, and to highlight the importance of research and education around the disease.

According to NHS data, one in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. But there is a good chance of recovery if the changes are detected early.

In October 2012, after discovering a lump herself, Councillor Upton was diagnosed with breast cancer. She received treatment at the Churchill hospital, including surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Councillor Upton’s treatment was successful and in summer 2013 she was told that her cancer was in remission. Whilst undergoing radiotherapy in the summer of 2013, Councillor Upton campaigned for and was elected to the City Council.

“Many of us will be affected by breast cancer in our lifetimes, either directly or indirectly. It is vital to check ourselves regularly and visit the GP if there are any unusual changes.

“From personal experience, I know how hard it can be to find that energy to schedule regular self-checks and make appointments at the GP, but, if caught early, breast cancer can be treated successfully. So, if you notice any changes, go and see the doctor.”

Councillor Louise Upton, Cabinet Member for Healthy Oxford

The charity Breast Cancer Now recommends that women use TLC:

  • Touch your breasts - can you feel anything unusual?
  • Look for changes - does anything look different?
  • Check any changes with your GP

There are some general tips recommended by the NHS for maintaining a healthy lifestyle that can help to lower the risk of many conditions, such as types of cancer, diabetes and heart disease. These include:

  • Maintaining a healthy, balanced diet
  • Enjoying fresh air and regular exercise
  • Limiting alcohol consumption

The City Council has a range of health facilities and green spaces, such as leisure centres, parks and countryside areas. The City Council delivers and supports a range of sports and wellbeing activities, including health walks, jogging groups, ping pong, and yoga.

For more information, see our Sports and physical activity pages.