Each year as we approach October the fever starts to erupt. By October, it reaches a fever pitch. I’m talking about the fever surrounding breast cancer awareness. Everyone wears pink. The grocery store shelves are filled with items manufactured by companies that pledge funds towards breast cancer research.

Even our football stars, America’s modern-day gladiators, don pink in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It’s at this time that we become most aware of the impact breast cancer has had among us. According to a 2015 report, Black women have nearly twice the rate of triple negative breast cancer – the deadliest form, as white women and we have the highest mortality rate from any form of breast cancer. That means that when you look around, many of the women you know and love will be impacted by breast cancer.

But what happens after October is what’s most important.

As a gynecologist, I see scores of women weekly, who when asked about doing regular self- breast exams, either look down in shame or willingly admit that they have not done their part in monitoring themselves for early signs of breast cancer.

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