Health Disorders in Breast and Ovarian Cancer
Breast cancer is a malignant tumour that starts in the cells of the breast. The disease occurs mostly in women but men can get it too. The term “ovarian cancer” includes several types of cancer that all arise from cells of the ovary. Both these diseases are major women’s health issues in urbanized areas. According to the National Cancer Institute, certain types of breast and ovarian cancer are highly genetic. These gene mutations pass from parent to child and frequently affect multiple generations of a family. They account for up to 25% of genetic breast cancers and 15% of ovarian cancer cases.
Breast and ovarian cancer are treated according to the stage and type of cancer and treatments often involve surgery, chemotherapy, hormone therapy and radiation. Some women choose to be screened for genetic mutations and have their breasts and ovaries removed as a preventative measure.
Health Disorders in Rett Syndrome
Occurring in about 1 in 10,000 female infants, Rett Syndrome is a women’s health issue, typically involves a developmental regression sometime in the first 18 months of life, according to the International Rett Syndrome Foundation. Symptoms include problems with various types of brain function – from emotional and behavioural issues to cognitive challenges.
The level of disability varies significantly and treatment typically involves behavioural therapy and special education. Rett Syndrome results from a mutation on the X chromosome, which a girl can receive from either parent.
There are treatments available for Rett syndrome that focuses on helping a girl live the best life she can with the condition. Physical therapy can help improve mobility; speech therapy may help somewhat with language problems and occupational therapy helps girls perform daily activities – like bathing and dressing independently.
Experts believe that therapy can help girls with Rett syndrome and their parents. Although a “normal” life may not be possible, some improvement can be expected with therapy. Participating in activities, including school and improved social interaction, are sometimes possible.
Medicines can help to manage some of the problems with movement in Rett syndrome. Medication can also help control seizures. Unfortunately, there is no cure for Rett syndrome, which is an irreversible women’s health issue.
Health Disorders in Osteoporosis
68 per cent of the 44 million people at risk for osteoporosis are women, making it a huge concern in women’s health issues. Osteoporosis may have its roots in childhood and adolescence, which is the period when your body does the most bone building. Women reach their peak bone mass at about age 18 while men reach theirs at 20. After that, both women and men continue to build small amounts of bone mass but men add more than women.
Two major factors that affect your chance of getting osteoporosis are:
- The amount of bone you have when you reach menopause- The greater your bone density is, to begin with, the lower your chance of developing osteoporosis. If you had low peak bone mass or other risk factors that caused you to lose bone, your chances of getting osteoporosis might be greater.
- How fast you lose bone after you reach menopause- For some women, bone loss happens faster than for others. In fact, a woman can lose up to 20% of her bone density during the five-seven years following menopause. If you lose bone quickly, you have a greater chance of developing osteoporosis.
According to doctors, the prevention of this women’s health issue is simple – Get enough calcium and vitamin D and eat a well-balanced diet, exercise and don’t smoke or drink.
Health Disorders in Postpartum Depression
Bringing a new baby into the family can be challenging at the best of times, both physically and emotionally. It is natural for new mothers to experience mood swings, feeling joyful one minute and depressed the next. These feelings are sometimes known as the “baby blues” and often go away soon after birth. However, some women may experience a deep and ongoing depression that lasts much longer. This is called postpartum depression.
One cannot afford to take this women’s health issue lightly as it affects both the mother and the child. Postpartum depression can begin anytime within the first year after childbirth. The cause is not known. Hormonal and physical changes after birth and the stress of caring for a new baby may play a role. Women who have had depression are at higher risk.
The first thing women affected should do is contact their doctor, who may refer them to a psychiatrist and/or therapist. If the doctor advises medication don’t be afraid to try it. For many women with PPMDs, medication is a helpful and necessary treatment. Mothers should not berate themselves if they do require medication. It can help.
Disclaimer: The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a health care professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.