Do You Know Your Girls?
African American women are 40% more likely to die from breast cancer than white women, are often diagnosed at later stages when treatments are limited, costly and the prognosis is poor, and are often diagnosed younger and with more aggressive breast cancers.
Sarah*, a 52 year old African American woman living in Plano, was diagnosed in March 2018 with metastatic breast cancer.
“It’s very important for every woman irrespective of their race or ethnicity to have a yearly mammogram. But as an African American, it’s even more important because many of us get diagnosed at a later stage when it becomes harder to treat. It’s a very hard conversation to have, but being honest about my breast cancer diagnosis is very important, especially when speaking to children, in my case my adult son and two teenagers.”
In an effort to address this unacceptable disparity in breast cancer mortality rates and help facilitate conversations like the ones Sarah is having with her children, Susan G. Komen and the Ad Council launched Know Your Girls, a national campaign to educate and inspire black women to understand their risk for breast cancer and take charge of their breast health.
A recent study found that while 92% of black women agree breast health is important, only 25 percent of women have recently discussed breast health with their family, friends or colleagues and only 17 percent have taken steps to understand their risk for breast cancer. The Know Your Girls campaign includes tools and tips to encourage African America women to talk with their family members about their health history and have informed conversations with their doctors about their breast health.
*Names have been changed to respect the privacy of the survivor.