The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) opined breast cancer, like every other cancer, is not demonic but a medical issue that should be treated physically.
Dr Felix Archibong, Chairman of the Cross River chapter of the association, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Calabar during the Go Pink Day celebration.
According to NAN reports, the Calabar Go Pink Day celebration was to sensitize the people about the dangers of breast cancer and the need for early detection for patient’s survival.
The theme of the celebration for 2023 is: “Reset Breast Cancer, From Screening to Survivorship.”
Archibong, who also urged patients to pray, advised that they should equally visit hospitals and get the correct diagnosis, noting that it was unfortunate that most cancer cases were presented late.
“This is an open campaign even to religious bodies, breast cancer is not demonic but a medical issue, so, don’t stop going to church or praying but seek care in a medical facility.
“A lot of people believe the breast is a private part and should not be exposed, this is why we are sensitizing people on ways to carry out self breast examination once a month, one week after menstrual flow.
“Also, medical breast examination should be done at least once a year, let it be like your birthday gift to yourself annually, so you don’t forget because noticing cancer early makes it easier to treat.”
On his views, Mr Yegwa Ukpo, the Executive Director of Asi Ukpo Comprehensive Cancer Centre, Calabar, hinted that the center was partnering with other organizations to sensitize people on the need to be screened.
Ukpo, who said that ignorance is dangerous, added that the center has girls as young as 16 and 17 years diagnosed with breast cancer on its treatment list.
He said, another burden in Nigeria is the lack of enough cancer centers, while the few available ones are overwhelmed.
He said “we also have the challenge of cost of treatment, this is why we have the Asi Ukpo Cancer Assist Foundation geared toward assisting indigent patients.”