Academic Master


Breast Cancer Personal Essay

For my patient I chose a breast cancer patient who is in the second stage of the disease. The patient is currently a thirty-year-old female. The patient is married with two children one who is six years old and the other four years old. The patient’s lab reports that as it is less than growth is small and still contained within the breast and it extends to only the nearby lymph nodes. Her specific form of the stage two cancer is the 2B which means that the size of the tumor in 2-5 centimeters in length. There are less than four lymph nodes that have been affected.

Monetary income is the total sum of money that a person receives as payment on a regular basis. The income is inclusive of the taxes that are yet to be paid out and the social expenditures. The patient is a casual worker. She does not currently have any permanent job with a stable income. Her level of income means she currently cannot afford insurance and the current employer does not provide for it either. She can be classified as a lower middle class earner however. This is because with the amount of work she currently does, juggling through various jobs in a day, working for fourteen hours a day, she earns enough money to support herself and provide for all her needs and that of her family. Maxine, the cancer patients has worked on many jobs and she has sufficient experience in the job market. She initially worked at Walmart as an assistant where she would help in stocking the shelves making sure that the customers get the items they require within the store. She also worked in marketing for a long time where she would take part in product promotion showing off her products in trade fairs, shows and exhibitions. She comes from Texas where most of her cultural influences may be trace back to. She likes eating a lot of steak. Meat has been shown by some studies to have some relation to cancer especially when the animals that produce the meat are infected or exposed to excess chemicals.

In terms on access to the proper medical attention, Maxine has had many barriers that may stop her from being able to access the care that she so critically needs. She has two children who are both not old enough to be left on their own. This means she has to dedicate a lot of her time to take care of the children this leaves her with very little extra time. Furthermore, as a mother she has many other duties that she has to attend to in her home. On the other had, she also works for fourteen hours a day. This means she only has 10 free hours daily to perform other duties. This tight schedule does not leave her with extra time which she can then use to seek medical attention. From a financial stand point, she is not any better. She has to pay for her rent or mortgage and then pay for her kid’s school fee and provide food on the table. With the meagre earning, she is rarely left with a lot after expenditure. She does not have a medical cover either and the current legislations has left her without it. This means every time she goes to the hospital she has to pay for the medication which for a cancer medication is very expensive.

For the patient to be able to control breast cancer, she should first understand the nature of the illness, treatment procedures and the prognosis of the condition. Breast cancer, like cervical cancer, is the one of the most common cancer among women. It is also one of the most deadly cancer in women after lung cancer. Breast cancer has been in the rise in the past decade and in 2017 around 200000 new diagnoses of this illness was recorded and an alarming number also expected to die from the same. Breast cancer, though uncommon, can also attack men.

The causes of this condition still remain unclear but a number of factors have been perceived as the likely causes of breast cancer. To begin with is Genetics. Just like diabetes and other genetic disorders, breast cancer is also genetically related. If ones close relative has or had breast cancer, her chances of contracting the same are higher. For the patient, if she also sires a female her risk of getting breast cancer are high. Secondly, is the age factor? As age increases, so does the chance of getting breast cancer. The probability of contracting breast cancer is 6 times higher in a 70 year old female than a 20 year old one. Other causes include the level of alcohol consumption, bodyweight, and high density in breast tissues among others.

Various symptoms are attributed to breast cancer and this include:

  • Morphing of the breast and change in size
  • Rash or rashes on or around the nipple
  • Reddening of the skin around the breast and on it
  • Nipple discharge
  • Swollen and painless lump under the arm

The patient should also be able to know the treatment procedures of breast cancer which include surgery, radiotherapy, hormone therapy, chemotherapy and also biological therapy.

The patient should be able to engage in self-care practices so as to control the condition. This include modification of the diet and exercise.

The patient, who has two kids who are girls, should be able to modify their diet so as to decrease their chances of contracting the disease. This include foods rich in fibre content such as whole grains. She should also include in her diet milk which is low-fat. Foods rich in vitamin D should also be included in the patient’s diet. A wide array of fruits and vegetables have also been found to be beneficial in the fight against breast cancers. They comprise of tomatoes, citrus fruits, carrots, kales, onions, apples among others.

Exercise is also key in patients with breast cancer. For a middle class earning person, she should not focus on purchasing equipment such as treadmills, dumbbells but should rather focus on outdoor activities. After various medical procedures such as radiation therapy, exercise is key to help reduce side effects related to the procedure. Radiation therapy after surgery has been found to reduce arm mobility and exercise helps one regain full use of their arms.

The middle class earning patient has access to multiple healthcare services. The patient is able to undergo various procedures which include radiotherapy and chemotherapy. This is possible due to the patient’s comprehensive insurance cover. The patient also has access to several support services which include counselling and nutrition services. The patient also has access to treatment plans which are prepared by the practitioners and includes frequent meetings with specialists. Due to the insurance cover the patient has, she also has access to new and improved treatment options such as clinical trials and medicine combinations


Cuzick, J. (2000). Future possibilities in the prevention of breast cancer: Breast cancer prevention trials. Breast Cancer Research2(4).

Du, L., Dewally, M., Shao, Y., & Singer, D. (2016). Banking and income inequality of the American community: an analysis. Banks And Bank Systems11(1), 52-59.

Erban, J., Smith, B., & Taghian, A. (2010). Breast cancer. New York: Demos Medical Pub.

Glied, S., & Smith, P. The Oxford handbook of health economics.



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