Purdue Professors Travel to Ghana to Raise Breast Cancer Awareness

Sophie Lelièvre

Sophie A. Lelièvre, an associate professor of basic medical sciences in the School of Veterinary Medicine and Ellen Gruenbaum, professor and chair of the department of anthropology at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, have traveled to Ghana this month to form a partnership for research with scientists at Peace and Love Hospital in the city of Kumasi. Professor Lelièvre will also present an address to a panel of African health and public policy experts.

“The incidence of breast cancer has risen rapidly in many African countries, and the World Health Organization is asking scientists from around the world to help shift efforts from detection toward primary prevention,” said Lelièvre

Ellen Gruenbaum

Professor Gruenbaum states, “Many African women are dying from breast cancer mainly because of a lack of understanding about the disease’s early symptoms and superstitions about the effects of breast cancer. While the country’s fatality rate from breast cancer is 10th highest in Africa, Ghanaian health-care officials and government leaders are working aggressively to raise awareness and educate women about how lives can be saved from early screening and treatment.” Professor Gruenbaum will establish a study to examine cultural and religious practices affecting breast health and dietary patterns.

It is estimated that 450,000 women die from breast cancer each year in Ghana.

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