MEN’S BREAST CAN­CER

Central Queensland News - - FRONT PAGE - Louise Shan­non Louise.Shan­non@ news­re­gional­me­dia.com.au

LESTER Anderson was sur­prised when four years ago he was di­ag­nosed with breast can­cer.

The Black­wa­ter lo­cal – who has no his­tory of breast can­cer in his fam­ily – said the stage one can­cer was caught early and he was “lucky” but he had been un­aware that men should be on the look­out for signs of breast can­cer.

“It’s an area that doesn’t raise much aware­ness. I was sur­prised. I thought, ‘Holy moly, what’s go­ing on here?’ ”

How­ever that was not to be Mr Anderson’s fi­nal brush with breast can­cer, as this week his older brother, Robert, be­gan treat­ment for stage three breast can­cer.

“I think with men it goes un­no­ticed a lot longer be­cause you think, ‘Why should I get breast can­cer? I haven’t got any breast tis­sue,’ ” he said.

Mr Anderson said his brother had an in­verted nip­ple, which was found to be breast can­cer, and he has al­ready had an op­er­a­tion on his right breast and will have chemo­ther­apy and ra­dium treat­ment.

“I caught mine re­ally early,” he said.

“It was one of those where I felt a bit of a lump in my left breast un­der the nip­ple and made an ap­point­ment with the doc­tor straight away.

“The doc­tor thought it could be scar tis­sue but or­gan­ised an ul­tra­sound, which showed there was some­thing there, so I had a nee­dle biopsy, which came back pos­i­tive. Then I saw the breast can­cer spe­cial­ist in Bris­bane.

“I had a deep tis­sue biopsy which came back pos­i­tive, so we made ar­range­ments for an op­er­a­tion to re­move the tu­mour the fol­low­ing week.

“I also had the gene test and it came back neg­a­tive.”

Lester’s sis­ter, Di Hornery, said it was im­por­tant to raise aware­ness and un­der­stand­ing of breast can­cer for men, which was why she’s been tak­ing part in Breast Can­cer Net­work Aus­tralia’s The Pink Butcher cam­paign.

The Pink Butcher Cam­paign, in­volv­ing 180 butch­ers from around Aus­tralia, has been rais­ing funds for breast can­cer through­out October, with butch­ers dress­ing up their shops – and them­selves – in pink.

“Breast can­cer for men is def­i­nitely not talked about enough,” Ms Hornery said.

“Women have been told and told for years to check our breasts but men haven’t and they must also check their breasts.”

Ms Hornery, who runs High­land Meats in Emer­ald, said next Satur­day she will hold a sausage siz­zle and raffle to raise funds for breast can­cer.

She said her six staff had been dress­ing in pink aprons and hats for the cam­paign’s first na­tional event.

Last year the Pink Butcher cam­paign was held in South Aus­tralia and raised more than $36,000 for BCNA.

It is es­ti­mated about one in 750 men will get breast can­cer. This year about 17,700 peo­ple will be di­ag­nosed with breast can­cer and 144 will be men.

“When one brother got breast can­cer, I thought that was just ran­dom,” Ms Hornery said.

“But then my sec­ond brother also got it.

“Now it makes me even more aware. I do my checks but prob­a­bly not enough be­cause I’ve al­ways thought that no­body in our fam­ily has had can­cer.”

Fair Dinkum Meats in Emer­ald and Cler­mont Butch­ery also signed up to take part in The Pink Butcher, which was started by butcher Rod­ney Sims, whose wife, Pat, is a breast can­cer sur­vivor.

Sam Dicicco, who along with Mr Sims is a mem­ber of the Aus­tralian Meat In­dus­try Coun­cil, is also a BCNA mem­ber and breast can­cer sur­vivor.

BCNA con­sists more than 130,000 mem­bers and 300 mem­ber groups and in­forms, rep­re­sents and con­nects Aus­tralians af­fected by breast can­cer.

On Satur­day, Novem­ber 4, Ms Hornery will hold a sausage siz­zle and raffle at High­land Meats, Emer­ald, from 8am–2pm to raise money and aware­ness for breast can­cer. Tick­ets for the raffle – a wheel­bar­row of good­ies – are on sale at High­land Meats.

PHOTO: KRIS­TEN BOOTH

MALE AWARE­NESS: Di Hornery runs High­land Meats in Emer­ald and is par­tic­i­pat­ing in the Pink Butcher cam­paign to raise funds for Breast Can­cer Net­work Aus­tralia.

Bob Anderson is re­ceiv­ing treat­ment for breast can­cer.

Lester Anderson had breast can­cer three years ago.

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