It's a sobering fact that the costs of cancer related medical expenditures are expected to reach about $158 billion by 2020. Medical expenditures that are expected to make up these costs include patient care, cancer diagnosis, testing and medical equipment. Furthermore, "If newly developed tools for cancer diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up continue to be more expensive, medical expenditures for cancer could reach as high as $207 billion," according to National Cancer Institute researchers.

The National Institutes of Health also reports that one of the best ways to counter the rising costs of diagnosing and treating cancer is to conduct advancing research that finds less expensive ways to diagnose and treat the disease. Prevention is another key ingredient in reducing the overall costs of cancer, including breast cancer which is projected to be the most expensive form of cancer in the United States by 2020.

Influential cancer foundations use money that they receive from breast cancer donations to increase breast cancer awareness, a first step toward achieving prevention. Specific ways that foundations use breast cancer donations are to conduct clinical trials, finance research projects and provide funding to hospitals and clinics to educate the public by offering prevention workshops, classes and information.

Another way that breast cancer donations are used is to investigate and research how chemicals in products like make-up, colognes and soaps influence molecules, tissue and cells. For example, synthetic chemicals in fingernail polish and other make-up products are examined to measure the impact of the products above and below the skin.

Researchers are also investigating the effect that household cleaners, certain food additives and plant chemicals have on the human body, particularly the immune system and cell development. As investigations reveal the ways that certain chemicals weaken the body, charity organizations use breast cancer donations to educate teens and adults about the dangers of using the chemicals.

To increase the chances that women and men will adhere to the information that they are offered, charity organizations as well as medical and educational institutions present the public with the data repeatedly. This might mean presenting educational seminars, workshops and question and answer symposiums to men and women once a month or once a quarter.

Researching the ways that inherited gene mutations influence health, how the immune system can be used to fight cancer and how certain molecules may cause cancer to spread are other ways that breast cancer donations are used. For example, organizations like the BCRF the Breast Cancer Research Foundation use donations they receive to provide funding to physicians, scientists and investigators so they can continue to search for a cure.

Because of this work, the number of scientists who believe that humans will discover a cure for cancer within the next decades is growing. Considering the fact that breast cancer is a commonly developed disease, finding a cure as soon as possible is paramount. In fact, Breast Cancer Organization shares that, "Besides skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among American women. Just under 30% of cancers in women are breast cancers."