It is said that 1 in every 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at least once in their lifetime.
As for Pakistan, the numbers are beyond alarming.
Over 90,000 breast cancer cases annually reported while over 40,000 deaths are caused by it which gives Pakistan the highest rank amongst breast cancer affected countries in all of Asia.
Early diagnosis can save lives and make a difference.
A majority of cases reported in Pakistan fail to get screened in time. This is mainly because patients are either afraid to undergo tests due to cultural restrictions or lack awareness on the subject.
Upon detection, it is often noted that women feel reluctant to share such news with family, and doctors for treatment.
Suburban and remote areas in Pakistan either lack medical practitioners and clinics, or nurture taboos that restrict access of women to a medical facility.
The situation is unsettling and the cause needs immediate action.
One common misconception about the disease is that it can't occur in men. While women have a higher chance, men can also develop the cancer in their breast tissues.
According to a popular study by the World Health Organisation, breast cancer remains the most common of all cancers that impact people, particularly women, across the world.
The cancer usually forms a lump that can be seen via x-rays or felt on the body.
Here's a quick look at some symptoms that help detect the cancer:
Internationally, death rates due to breast cancer have seen a significant decline but most of this positive impact is due to an increase in awareness and knowledge on the topic.
Pakistan needs the same.
Also read: ‘Breast Cancer Awareness: A step-by-step guide to breast self-examination’
A number of Pakistani organisations step forward each year to help people understand the importance of early detection, awareness around treatments and diagnosis, and self-examination.
One such organisation, HBL, set out to create awareness amongst employees and the many lives they touch by lighting up their HQ and going pink.
Here's how that happened:
Looks like the office in Clifton also made it to Twitter:
The organisation also arranged a 'Pink Day' event across all offices where employees were encouraged to spread awareness and understand the many plagues associated with the disease.
Here's a glimpse of employees dressed in pink to support the cause:
HBL is a strong proponent of diversity and equality in the workplace, and prides itself on being an industry leader in promoting diversity in the banking sector.
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