<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=316375289827066&amp;ev=PageView &amp;noscript=1">

A Gender Neutral Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Apicha Community Health Center Oct 15, 2019  

Apicha CHC - VICE

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and important time to raise awareness and encourage prevention. However, it's time that this awareness month becomes more inclusive.

Breast cancer doesn't affect just women

Breast cancer is most commonly associated with women, with one in eight women developing invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. But women aren't the only ones who suffer from breast cancer. There are other folks, who are nonbinary and trans, who also suffer from breast cancer. And, it's worth noting that men also suffer from breast cancer.

Not everyone uses the term "breast"

Not all folks refer to their chest area as breasts. There are many trans and nonbinary folks who prefer a different term, like chest. Sometimes, referring to a trans or nonbinary person's chest area as breasts, or using the term breast cancer, can be triggering and cause dysphoria. As such, we need to rethink how we talk about breast cancer and breast cancer awareness.

Apicha CHC - iStock-910165728

The problem with a women-focused breast cancer campaign

Women have the highest rates of breast cancer. So it's no surprise that many awareness and fundraising campaigns are tailored to women and have a very feminine marketing plan. For example, a pink ribbon is a popular symbol used to represent the breast cancer awareness campaign. Or, another campaign, "Save the Tatas," is very much directed toward individuals who identify as having breasts.

The problem with breast cancer campaigns being so gendered to women, is that it excludes other individuals who do not identify as female or feminine. This can leave folks feeling dysphoric, triggered, and unseen. 

A lack of resources & support

With breast cancer being so gendered and focused on women, it can exclude trans and nonbinary folks from the conversation. These individuals may not be getting the resources and support they need in order to properly prevent or learn about breast cancer. Without proper knowledge and access to inclusive services, trans and nonbinary individuals who are at risk or have breast cancer are left behind. 

Taking care of your health

Individuals of all ages are encouraged to do a self exam of their chest area once a month for any signs of cancer of abnormalities. A medical provider can also perform the exam for you during an annual physical or by request. For folks age 50 and over, mammograms are recommended once a year. If your family has a history of breast cancer, let your medical provider know. You can learn how to do a self check exam here.

How Apicha CHC can help you

At Apicha CHC, we offer inclusive medical and non-medical services for everyone. Our trans health clinic helps provide trans and nonbinary individuals with much-needed services in a welcoming and gender-affirming environment. In addition, we provide referrals for mammograms.


Ready to take action about your health?
 request an appointment

Subscribe For Updates

What's the Difference Between Nonbinary & Genderqueer?

What's the Difference Between Nonbinary & Genderqueer?

Understanding different identities can be difficult, but it's also incredibly important. And for...
Early Signs of HIV

Early Signs of HIV

Early HIV is the beginning stage of HIV disease, right after HIV infection occurs.
How to Support Someone Who is Transitioning

How to Support Someone Who is Transitioning

Making the choice to transition is a big milestone. Whether it’s your partner, a friend, or anyone...
Gay Sex & Primary Care: What You Need To Know

Gay Sex & Primary Care: What You Need To Know

  Some of the many ways Apicha Community Health Center (CHC) has served New York City’s LGBT...
Transgender Sexual Health Guide: Safer Sex

Transgender Sexual Health Guide: Safer Sex

When it comes to sex, there’s a serious lack of resources available to transgender people that...
Recognizing World AIDS Day 2021

Recognizing World AIDS Day 2021

Every year, on December 1, people worldwide commemorate World Aids Day. This is a dedicated day to...
Celebrating PrEP Aware Week 2021

Celebrating PrEP Aware Week 2021

This year, from October 25 to October 31, 2021 people worldwide will be celebrating the third...
First Openly Trans and Female Four-Star Officer and Admiral of the USPHS Commissioned Corps

First Openly Trans and Female Four-Star Officer and Admiral of the USPHS Commissioned Corps

On Tuesday, October 9, 2021, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) made history by...
What's on the Ballot? General Election November 2021

What's on the Ballot? General Election November 2021

November is coming up, which means it's voting season! Voting is an essential part of every...