Her Health first sheds light on women’s health issues – specifically those that are among the most pressing today including bone health, heart health, and cancer. Learn more about some surprising findings from our survey of women on their awareness of health issues and barriers to action; get health information and tools to prioritize your health; and then share what you’ve learned with women in your life so that each woman feels empowered to put her health first, and can encourage other women to do the same.
Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally; about one in six deaths is due to cancer. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women in 140 of the 184 countries worldwide; cervical cancer is the most common in 39 countries. About one third of deaths from cancer are due to high body mass index (BMI), low fruit and vegetable intake, lack of physical activity, and tobacco and alcohol use.
Cancer Care Survey Results
A recent survey in Canada revealed some unexpected findings about how women view cancer care and the challenges that they face:
When it comes to cancer, the women interviewed were concerned about the potential impact of cancer treatment and the impact of the diagnosis on their loved ones.
About three in four women who do not have cancer said they worried about the side effects of cancer treatment (79%), the impact on their loved ones (79%) and about the loss of their lifestyle if they are diagnosed (75%).
Cancer falls to the bottom of health-related issues women talk to their doctor about.
The Canadian Cancer society estimates that nearly one in two Canadians are expected to develop cancer during their lifetime. In 2016, cancer was the leading cause of death among Canadians. Yet, in the survey, few women (4%) reported that they discuss cancer with their healthcare provider.
There are also troubling signs about screenings among older women.
One in three women over 65 (33%) reported they have never been offered a cancer screening. When it comes to cervical cancer screening in younger women however (30-44), three in four women reported that they have been screened.
Women are not talking to each other about cancer but say that conversations with friends would promote behavior changes about screening. Most women (60%) across all age groups do not discuss cancer with family/friends. However, if a family or friend talked to them about getting screened for cancer, most (83%) said it would increase their likelihood of getting a cancer screening, signaling a concerning gap.