The pinkification of breast cancer has been good and bad: It has its own ribbon, its own month, and has even shown up on NFL helmets. And yet, all of the superficial “pink” surrounding the disease has sometimes overshadowed the updates to its care: Myths pervade, with misinformation that can make a diagnosis super-scary.
Don’t get us wrong: It is scary, whether it’s happening to you or a loved one. Each year, an estimated 269,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer, the most common cancer type among women and the fourth most deadly, taking more than 40,000 lives yearly, according to the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program (SEER).
But new innovations bring new hope—and empowering yourself with the latest information can make things feel less terrifying. Here are 10 things breast cancer experts want you to know.