Breast cancer is a cancer that starts in the breast tissue commonly from the inner liner of the milk ducts or lobules known as the ductal carcinomas and lobular carcinomas. It is predominantly found in women, but men can also be diagnosed with it is as well. Breast cancer can be invasive or noninvasive. Invasive means that the cancer has spread from its starting point, while noninvasive means it has yet to invade other breast tissue.
There are no early signs of breast cancer; as breast cancer does not cause pain. Those symptoms that could be indicators are:
The advanced symptoms of breast cancer are:
Breast cancer is caused by the breast cells growing abnormally, and dividing more rapidly than the healthy cells do. These cells form a tumor that may spread through the breast to the lymph nodes and can go to the other parts of the body. The causes of breast cancer can vary. Women with a family history of the disease are more likely to be at risk as it could be inherited through gene mutation. Those who have started their periods early before the age of 12 might be more at risk. Age can play a factor in women over the age of 50 as advanced breast cancer is usually found at or above 50.
The diagnosis of breast cancer is done first by a physical exam of the breast, armpit, neck, and chest area. Test that are used to diagnose breast cancer are:
Treatment is based on the type of breast cancer an individual has and then is determined by the doctor. Many women undergo surgery and or other treatment such as chemotherapy, hormone therapy or radiation.
Since there are factors that can’t be controlled such as genes and family history, the most recommended prevention methods is a change in daily life, such as limiting the intake of alcohol, increasing exercise for at least 20 minutes daily, maintaining a healthy weight, changing diet to more healthy food such as: whole grain, eating five plus serving of vegetables and fruits daily, take out process foods and limit red meat in diet. In women 50 and older, limiting postmenopausal hormone therapy has also been proven assistive.
Ways to prevent breast cancer or detect the disease early and increase the chances of dealing with in its early stages are to perform regular breast self-exams starting when women are in their twenties. In the thirties, women should begin clinical breast exams no less than every three years. When one reaches their early forties, a mammogram should be completed no less than every two years. Once women are in their fifties the mammogram should be performed yearly. In this way, should breast cancer develop, it can be caught and dealt with in its early stages.