Breast cancer survivor Ellen Duncan.
Breast cancer survivor Ellen Duncan. Valerie Horton

Snapshot of women's cancer in Wide Bay-Burnett

ABOUT 230 women in the Wide Bay-Burnett region are being diagnosed with breast or gynaecological cancer every year.

New statistics from Cancer Council Queensland provided a snapshot of women's cancers across the region to mark the start of Women's Health Week.

Every day in Queensland 12 women are diagnosed with a breast or gynaecological cancer and two die from the disease, with the latest research showing women living in certain geographic regions are at a greater risk of being diagnosed.

Hervey Bay's Ellen Duncan was diagnosed with breast cancer 17 years ago and runs the Hervey Bay Breast Cancer Support Group.

She underwent a mastectomy after the cancer was found to have spread into the lymph nodes in her arm.

Ms Duncan said she had a mammogram while failed to detect the cancer, but after undergoing an ultrasound she was diagnosed.

Despite having no history of breast or gynaecological cancer in her family, Ms Duncan's younger sister was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

She was able to beat it, but sadly it came came back and claimed her life.

Ms Duncan said it was important women paid attention to their bodies.

"Nobody knows your body like you do," she said.

Ms Duncan said it was also important to do regular self-examinations when it came to checking for potential lumps and to have check ups such as mammograms as often as they were needed.

Cancer Council Queensland CEO Ms. Chris McMillan urged women to prioritise their health this week and put women's cancers in the spotlight to raise awareness of the disease across the state.

"We're urging women to get to know their bodies and take part in relevant screening programs to help detect women's cancers early," Ms McMillan said.

Women's cancers include cancers of the breast, cervix, ovaries, uterus, vagina and vulva.

"Around 4200 women are diagnosed with a female cancer each year in Queensland and 830 of which die from the disease.

"We need to do more to ensure women are taking part in eligible screening programs, and getting to know their bodies well enough to have a recognition of if symptoms of the cancer is exploited so they are able to avoid it."