Radhika Krishnan



I survived it and you can too …….. I would like to share a few thoughts with you today and would like to enlist your support as well in the journey that I have undertaken. I am a breast cancer survivor. I have had regular Mammograms but the opportunity to detect my cancer before it became a lump was missed. I found a breast lump on 2009 and it was diagnosed to be a breast cancer. I had the opportunity to interact with a lot of doctors, nurses and fellow patients. I caught it early and had whatever medicine can offer in terms of treatment and the best possible support from my family, to be where I am today. But not every woman is as fortunate as me. Throughout the treatment period, I realized that …… 1. There is lack of awareness about breast cancer. Many are even unaware of the illness. They leave it till it is too late. Many cannot get good medical attention. Many are not in a position to spend money and many do not get the support from their family to complete the treatment and lead a normal life after the breast cancer. 2. Medical fraternity needs to move from treating advanced cancers to invest on early detection of breast cancer in our country. 3. The cost of breast cancer is prohibitive in our country, where the majority does not have access to free health care or have medical insurance. 4. The psychosocial support that is required during the treatment period and afterwards is sourly lacking in our part of the country. 5. There is very little research done about breast cancer in India. Breast cancer occurs a decade earlier in Indian women than the western women and they are more likely to be hormone independent. (ER / PR negative). We need to know why? We decided to make a difference. Our goal is simple. It is life. I started Penn Nalam – A Unit of Sri Dhanvantri Trust is an non-profit organization with a goal set to increase and spread awareness about breast and cervical cancers, which are the two most common cancers affecting women in India. Penn Nalam unit caters comprehensive treatment for women above 12 yrs of age suffering with some gynaecological problems and cancer using low-priced diagnostics. Since Penn Nalam concentrates more on women who cannot afford corporate hospitals charges and thus majority of women treated here belong to middle and lower strata of society. We set up a low cost screening programs to benefit women from under-privileged communities, and through our out-reach programs we reach out to many women and make them aware about breast cancer, cervical cancers and now oral cancers too.