Men can also suffer from breast cancer

National, Normal


THE common misconception that only women have breast cancer is slowly being broken down at the Oncology (cancer) ward at the Port Moresby General Hospital.
According to sister in charge, Ellie Winge, men were not excluded when it comes to breast cancer.
Sr Ellie, when speaking at the launch of the Telikom cancer helpline toll free service last Thursday, said three men had been treated for breast cancer so far.
Two of them have completed their treatment and the other is still being treated.
Sr Ellie said in PNG, people had cancer through exposure to certain chemicals, through genetics and about three quarters were attributed to lifestyles.
She said there were many types of cancer with mouth and throat prevalent in men and cervical and breast most common among women.
“In a day, the Oncology ward treats more than 30 patients, new and old, who come in for general treatment and chemotheraphy,” she said.
Sr Ellie said because of  so many people,  the ward could not cater for everyone and the serious cases were usually referred to Lae’s Angau Memorial Hospital.
She said they did a lot of good work and had seen successes but they were still understaffed and needed at least five more nursing officers and a specialist cancer doctors to assist them.
She said the necessary drugs and equipment needed were expensive but the ward gets by, on what the Port Moresby Cancer Relief Society raised, and also from corporate and individual donors.
This month is Cancer Awareness Month with particular emphasis on breast cancer, and as part of the awareness, Fridays have been set aside for manual breast  checkup.