Celebrating the spirit of strength, breast cancer survivors were feted by Basavatarakam Indo-American Cancer Hospital and Research Institute, Banjara Hills, on the occasion of Breast Cancer Survivors’ Day on Saturday. The felicitation session was followed by a talk by Mamta Goenka, chief guest, who was twice diagnosed with breast cancer.
“The fist reaction on knowing that a person is inflicted by breast cancer is ‘Why me’, but my reaction was ‘Try me’, I challenged god that I am going to put up a fight,” said Mamta. On of her experience of having come out of the disease, she realised the gap between doctors and patients and designed a ‘post operation course’ which she conducts thrice a week at Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai for patients who underwent treatment for breast cancer.
Speaking on the kind of care that needs to be taken after the operation, Mamta made people aware of lyphedema, a disorder which patients might experience after surgery or radiation therapy. “I suffered from the condition and got it cured in America as suitable treatment was not available in India. I do not want others to be caught unaware of lymphedema and that is the first seed I plant in post operation classes”, said Mamata
Chairman of the hospital, Nandamuri Balakrishna, mentioned that patients need will power to fight the disease, and an example of such a spirit is Mamata. He mentioned that apart from providing treatment, the hospital organised awareness programs for people to inform them about the symptoms of the disease.
Recalling the time when his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, P Raghu Ram, director, KIMS-Ushalakshmi Centre for Breast Diseases, who was present at the event, spoke about the kind of courage it takes to fight the disease. “I oppose the use of word ‘survivors’ for people who come out of the disease, they should be called ‘conquerors’,” said Raghu Ram. He added that the disease not only affects the body, but the mind and soul as well.