Male Breast Cancer Survivor Shares His Story Through Advocacy

Ambrose Kirkland
Posted at 5:20 PM, Oct 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-21 18:34:07-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - The National Breast Cancer Foundation reports that one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

Men get breast cancer too, and that's the message one male breast cancer survivor wants to make sure is heard this month. About 26,000 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer each year, and 450 will die from the disease.

Ambrose Kirkland was one of those men who was diagnosed, and he said that he is always willing to share his story with others in hopes of getting other men to come forward if they find a lump like he did in 2001.

"Like a typical man I didn't do anything about it," Kirkland admitted. "I waited until about five or six months later when I noticed discharge coming from my left nipple."

He had a mammogram, his blood tested, and a lumpectomy. His doctor told him he had cancer. He had radiation treatments. 

"I was little shocked but because of family history of breast cancer because of paternal history I wasn't surprised," said Kirkland.

The survivor focused his efforts on advocacy, appearing in the documentary Pink and Blue: Colors of Hereditary Breast Cancer. He also wrote a book called Mama, I Found a Lump.

His and others' efforts seem to be working, as some governors have even declared this week Male Breast Cancer Awareness Week like Georgia Governor Nathan Deal. 

"If there is a man out there listening to me and you have lump, don't be afraid to go have it checked out," said Kirkland.