Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer among Black women and the second leading cause of death for Black women. In 2010, the CDC reported that breast cancer was the leading cause of cancer death for Black women aged 45-64 years. In addition, the CDC reported that the breast cancer death rate for women aged 45-64 years was 60% higher for Black women than white women (56.8 and 35.6 deaths per 100,000, respectively).
(CDC: National Vital Statistics System: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss.htm)
Breast cancer is more common among women later in life, but can strike at any age. In fact, many are surprised to learn that young Black women have a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
Black women under age 40 have a higher incidence of breast cancer and lower survival rates than white women. One reason for these inequities is the differences in the types of breast cancer that affect Black women. Black women are often diagnosed at later stages when the cancer has already spread. The good news is when breast cancer is detected and treated early, Black women have a much greater chance of survival.
There is no known way to prevent breast cancer, but early detection and timely treatment can save lives. Breast cancer should not steal your future, especially during the prime of your life.