Concept of Breast Wellness
The usual but inadequate concept of breast wellness is the absence of breast abnormality or disease.
My personal recommended concept which I think is more comprehensive consists of the following:
A state wherein there is NO breast issue (in the domain of symptoms, diseases, and fear and anxiety even in the absence of disease) that affects the physical, mental and social well-being and / or the socioeconomic productivity of a person.
Breast issue includes anything under the sun but usually can be categorized into three areas or domains, namely, symptoms referable to the breasts; breast diseases; and fear and anxiety of breast disorder, specially breast cancer, even in the absence of real disease.
This concept is deduced from the World Health Organization’s definition of HEALTH and the common definitions of WELLNESS. “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” (WHO)
Breast wellness in a person also includes the following concepts:
- illness is NOT an impediment to well-being;
- illness and health are NOT two opposite poles, but two dimensions; and
- one can be physically ill and yet can feel healthy.
Thus, for women with breast cancers, especially those in remission, they can be considered healthy. They can feel healthy even if they have a history of breast cancer. Corollary to this, for women with history of any kind of non-cancer breast diseases, such as infections and non-cancerous masses, they can and should feel healthy, particuarly, when these problems have been resolved.
Part of development of:
Promoting Breast Wellness Among Filipino Females
Reynaldo O. Joson, MD, MHA, MHPEd, MSc Surg
May 18, 2012