A retired British police officer, who has the disease himself, has set out to dispel the myth that men don’t get breast cancer.
Dave, 64, lives in Bristol. In 2015, he went on a trip to Florida to celebrate his birthday. At that time, he felt that lymph was growing in his chest.
After returning home, Dave immediately went to the doctor. Then she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Coming from his own experience in the awareness campaign, Dave said, “I am proud to be a part of this campaign for the good of all. Regardless of gender identity, breast cancer should be screened.”
Dave had no idea he could have breast cancer before he found lymph in his body.
“I had no idea that men needed to be screened for breast cancer too,” she told the BBC. However, I knew that it is not right to avoid any abnormal changes in the body. So I went to the doctor when I got home.
“I was told it could also be a fatty tissue. A week later I had an ultrasound and a biopsy. I was diagnosed with hormone-responsive breast cancer.”
At first, Dave was scared. He didn’t know how to tell his children.
Eventually she underwent a mastectomy, i.e. removal of the breast. He was then given chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Dave said, “The journey to cancer has been a positive experience in many ways. It’s been seven years, I’m healthy. I am still taking some medications regularly. These will reduce the chances of the cancer coming back in my body.”
Dave shared his breast cancer experience by taking part in an awareness campaign called Tickled Pink. Organizers of the campaign included Asda, Breast Cancer Now and Copafill.
One of the slogans of this campaign was – check your breasts and chest like doing your weekly shopping.
Seven of the campaigners, including Dave, have released topless photos of themselves to be put on display, which will be seen by millions.
All of them are interested in sharing their experiences with breast cancer.
Dave says there is still not a lot of awareness about male breast cancer.
“People will say, it was not known that men could get such a disease. Honestly, I never thought that would happen to me.”
Breast Cancer Awareness Month is observed throughout October.