The National Guidelines For Breast Cancer Screening in Dubai

Breast cancer is a significant health concern worldwide, including in Dubai. To address this issue, the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) has developed comprehensive guidelines for breast cancer screening and diagnosis. These guidelines are designed to ensure early detection, prompt treatment, and improved outcomes for patients. In this article, we will outline the national guidelines for Breast Cancer Screening in Dubai.

Importance of Breast Cancer Screening in Dubai

Breast cancer is a significant health concern for women worldwide, including in Dubai. Screening for breast cancer is crucial because it can detect the disease at an early stage when treatment is most effective. Early detection can significantly improve the chances of survival and reduce the need for aggressive treatments.

Regular screening can help detect breast cancer before symptoms appear. Mammograms, which are X-ray images of the breast, are the most common screening method. Mammograms can detect tumors that are too small to be felt during a physical exam.

The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) recommends that all women aged 40 and above undergo regular mammograms every two years. Women with a family history of breast cancer or other risk factors may need to start screening earlier or have additional tests.

Breast cancer screening can also help detect non-invasive or early-stage cancers, which are easier to treat. Early detection can lead to less extensive surgery, fewer complications, and a higher chance of preserving the breast.

Screening Methods

  1. Mammography: This is an X-ray of the breast that can detect tumors that are too small to be felt. The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) recommends that women aged 40 and above undergo regular mammograms every two years.
  2. Clinical Breast Exam (CBE): This is a physical exam of the breasts done by a healthcare professional. The DHA recommends that women aged 40 and above have a clinical breast exam every year.
  3. Breast Self-Exam (BSE): This involves checking the breasts regularly for any changes or abnormalities. While it is no longer recommended as a screening method on its own, it is still important for women to be aware of how their breasts normally look and feel.
  4. Other Imaging Tests: In some cases, additional imaging tests such as breast ultrasound or MRI may be recommended, especially for women with a higher risk of breast cancer.

It’s important for women to discuss their screening options with their healthcare provider to determine the best approach based on their individual risk factors and preferences.

Diagnosis of Breast Cancer

  1. Diagnostic Mammogram: This is a more detailed mammogram that is used to evaluate a suspicious area in the breast.
  2. Breast Ultrasound: This imaging test uses sound waves to create a picture of the inside of the breast. It can help determine whether a lump is solid or filled with fluid.
  3. Breast Biopsy: This is the only way to confirm whether a suspicious area is cancerous. During a biopsy, a small sample of tissue is taken from the breast and examined under a microscope.
  4. MRI: In some cases, a breast MRI may be recommended to provide more detailed images of the breast tissue.

Once a diagnosis of breast cancer is confirmed, further tests may be done to determine the stage of the cancer and whether it has spread to other parts of the body. This information helps healthcare providers develop a treatment plan that is tailored to the individual patient.

It’s important for women to discuss their diagnosis and treatment options with their healthcare team to make informed decisions about their care.

Treatment Options

The treatment for breast cancer depends on the stage of the cancer, as well as other factors such as the patient’s overall health and personal preferences. Treatment options may include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormone therapy, and targeted therapy. The goal of treatment is to remove the cancer and prevent it from coming back.

Conclusion

Breast cancer screening and diagnosis are essential components of breast cancer prevention and early detection. The national guidelines for breast cancer screening and diagnosis in Dubai provide a framework for healthcare professionals to ensure that women receive the appropriate screening and follow-up care. By following these guidelines, women can reduce their risk of developing advanced breast cancer and improve their chances of survival.

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saba bashir
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