Campaign urges Lothian women to fight breast cancer

WOMEN in the Lothians have been urged to take a more proactive approach in checking for breast cancer.

Breakthrough Breast Cancer said more awareness of the disease's symptoms would reduce deaths across the area.

The organisation, which has its Scottish headquarters in the Capital, said it would be lobbying political parties to put the issue at the top of their manifestos ahead of the elections in May.

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It is the country's most common form of cancer, affecting around 4000 women a year, but earlier diagnosis is absolutely key to reducing mortality rates.

Breakthrough's director in Scotland, Audrey Birt, said: "With New Year resolutions being made across the country, we would like women to resolve to be breast aware in 2011.

"Recent survey work by Breakthrough shows poor levels of breast awareness in Scotland and while more women are surviving breast cancer than ever before, getting an early diagnosis is still central to achieving the best possible outcome.

"Our own message is show your breasts some TLC - touch, look, check.

"We are also calling on all political parties ahead of the Holyrood elections to commit to raising levels of breast awareness so that women can receive that crucial early diagnosis, and to protect spending on the breast screening programme."