Essay on Environmental Risk Factors For Breast Cancer

Essay on Environmental Risk Factors For Breast Cancer

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Although environmental risk factors for breast cancer can pose a variety of influential affects, these factors can be prevented or changed with policies and laws. Risk factors that individuals have less control over include social factors such as race and ethnicity. Breast cancer can ultimately affect women at any age or any race, however the rates of obtaining breast cancer are varied between race and ethnicity. Throughout various studies, there is an increased rate of breast cancer in white women compared to African or Hispanic women (Lantz et al, 2006, p. 2173). There is a geographical variation of breast cancer, which can be seen through highest incidence rates in northern and Western Europe, northern America, Australia and New Zealand and in South American countries of Uruguay and Argentina. Incidences of breast cancer are much lower throughout Africa, Asia and most of central and South America (Bray et al., 2004, p. 230). These incident rates are not a result of genetic factors but rather socioeconomic factors that have been determined through research. According to Robert et al (2003), a study conducted found that “ Women are at a higher risk of breast cancer if they have higher socioeconomic status (SES) or live in higher SES or urban communities (p. 442). This study focused on looking at variables such as education, alcohol intake, body mass index, oral contraceptive use, hormone replacement use and a variety of other factors (Robert et al, 2003). These variables represent lifestyle factors rather than genetic to provide an understanding that the possible reason why breast cancer rates are higher in women of higher socioeconomic status is due to the fact that they have the opportunity to have different lifestyle factors. ...

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...ift the current public health model, in which society believes it is an individual problem caused by individual choices. The government will have an opportunity to develop new regulation policies to mitigate breast cancer and reduce the inequalities that cause the differences various women experience for their diagnosis time, treatments, and survival rates typically due to their socioeconomic status. Creating laws to limit women’s exposure to hormone disruptors, allowing all to have same health care opportunities, and enabling public knowledge about daily exposures that can be detrimental to health and the environment are all regulations that the government can develop to alleviate this issue. By individuals recognizing that breast cancer is a health inequality issue that can be improved by decreasing the environmental, social and political inequalities in society.

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