Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Let's get real. I will show you some statistics

Are Malaysian Chinese and Indians more prone to get breast cancers compared to Malay women? I don't think so. The apparent lower incidence among Malay women is because we lost these people to the bomoh; they didn't come to the hospital.

They prefer to go anywhere else, but not to the doctors. For example , this 25 year old well-educated girl seek treatment from a 'bomoh who operates" for her breast lump.

"Picture DELETED"

After undergoing 'surgery' and acquiring disfiguring scars, the lump was still there. She came to me for a' second opinion'. Luckily it was a breast mouse; a fibroadenoma, a non-cancerous or benign condition.

Whooi, what's this?

During my 20 years of surgical practice, I have seen 5 such cases. The first one was 15 years ago in Mentakab, the woman walked into my clinic with a towel over her shoulder and her arm was supporting something underneath the towel. It was a FIFA-standard-football size lesion. This lady in the picture came last year. The last patient came last week, all the way from Penang. This lesion is called Phylloides tumour (giant fibroadenoma - but ours are really giants!) The point is, why our ladies presented with this huge lesion? Why so late? Why don't you come early and get treated with a small lumpectomy. This tumour changes to cancer after sometime. When it does, it becomes a sarcoma; a cancer with even worth prognosis compare to that of the usual breast cancers.

When I decided to start this blog, all I have is this in mind... To get rid of this third world mentality out of our mind. We have first class medical facilities ! I am not talking about KL or Penang, but in most major towns and cities in Malaysia. Probably before we start talking about medical tourism, we should get our people to recognised our hospitals as a place to come for medical treatment !

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