The fact that mammography devices used for the diagnosis of breast cancer are not suitable for all wheelchair users, especially individuals with spinal cord paralysis, makes early diagnosis of breast cancer difficult. Semra Çetinkaya, President of the Turkish Spinal Cord Paralysis Association, said, “While one out of every 8 women in Turkey is diagnosed with breast cancer, only 35% of them can be diagnosed early. Since we cannot stand up, we cannot undergo mammography and our chances of early diagnosis decrease. This year, in the Breast Cancer Awareness month, we want all physically disabled women, especially those with spinal cord paralysis, to be noticed.” said.
The World Health Organization has recently declared 1-31 October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. According to the data announced, there has been a 25-fold increase in breast cancer in the last 3 years in our country. While one out of every 8 women is diagnosed with breast cancer, the rate of early diagnosis is 35 percent. In the diagnosis of breast cancer, which is one of the most common cancers both in the world and in Turkey, all physically disabled women, especially those with spinal cord paralysis, face great difficulty because the devices are not suitable for their disability. or unable to access the mammography device. Semra Çetinkaya, President of the Turkish Spinal Cord Paralysis Association, said, “We want all physically disabled women, especially those with spinal cord paralysis, to be noticed this year in Breast Cancer Awareness Month.”
“We can't have a mammogram without two people”
Semra Çetinkaya, who continued her life as a spinal cord paralyzed person as a result of an accident in 1994 and is one of the founders of the Turkish Spinal Cord Paralytics Association, also experienced the difficulties of individuals with spinal cord paralysis in this process due to the cancer process she had. Expressing that it is difficult enough to adapt to life with a wheelchair, Çetinkaya said, “We are blocked in different areas of life. However, when these areas are health, things get even more difficult. Individuals need to be able to stand up for mammography devices. It is necessary to have a companion in tomography or imaging devices. We do not need a companion for the mammography device like other imaging devices.” used the phrases.
“We want to have equal conditions in early diagnosis”
Çetinkaya said, “Our association receives hundreds of complaints about this issue as well”; “We are working hard to see and announce the problems of physically disabled individuals. We are aware of the importance of mammography for the early diagnosis of breast cancer. Currently, there are special devices in a few hospitals in Turkey that allow individuals with disabilities to perform mammography alone. With patient-controlled mammography, individuals can adjust the compression themselves without getting up from their wheelchairs and feel the sensation of pain at a minimum level. We want to increase the number of these devices, which enable the person to take mammography from their seat, across Turkey, and to ensure that disabled individuals have equal conditions in early diagnosis of breast cancer.”