Cancer And The Female Breast
Figure: Breast and Adjacent Lymph Nodes
Figure: The female breast along with lymph nodes and vessels. An inset shows a close-up view of the breast with the following parts labeled: lobules, lobe, ducts, nipple, areola, and fat.
Inside a woman’s breast are 15 to 20 sections, or lobes. Each lobe is made of many smaller sections called lobules. Fibrous tissue and fat fill the spaces between the lobules and ducts . Breast cancer occurs when cells in the breast grow out of control and form a growth or tumor. Tumors may be cancerous or not cancerous .
Kohler BA, Sherman RL, Howlader N, Jemal A, Ryerson AB, Henry KA, Boscoe FP, Cronin KA, Lake A, Noone AM, Henley SJ, Eheman CR, Anderson RN, Penberthy L. Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975-2011, Featuring Incidence of Breast Cancer Subtypes by Race/Ethnicity, Poverty, and State. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015 Mar 30 107:djv048. doi: 10.1093/jnci/djv048. Print 2015 Jun.
Current And Future Burden Of Breast Cancer: Global Statistics For 2020 And 2040
In a new study, researchers from the International Agency for Research on Cancer and partner institutions provide a global overview of the burden of breast cancer in 2020 and estimate the impact this disease will have in 2040. The authors predict that by 2040 the breast cancer burden will increase to more than 3 million new cases per year and more than 1 million deaths per year . The study was published in the journal The Breast.
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer type, accounting for 1 in 8 cancer diagnoses worldwide. In 2020, there were about 2.3 million new cases of breast cancer globally and about 685 000 deaths from this disease, with large geographical variations observed between countries and world regions. Breast cancer incidence rates are highest in countries that have undergone economic transition, but transitioning countries carry a disproportionate share of breast cancer deaths.
Arnold M, Morgan E, Rumgay H, Mafra A, Singh D, Laversanne M, et al.Current and future burden of breast cancer: global statistics for 2020 and 2040Breast, Published online 2 September 2022 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.breast.2022.08.010
Global Breast Cancer Mortality Rates
In 2011 over 508,000 women died of breast cancer worldwide according to the World Health Organization .
Although breast cancer is often associated with the developed world almost half of all breast cancer cases and 58% of deaths occur in less developed countries.
In 2012 the top 20 countries for breast cancer survival rates are in the table below taken from World Cancer Research Fund International . The ranking of the countries is based upon the number of women diagnosed with breast cancer who were alive 5 years later. Figures are based on breast cancer survivors per 100,000 adult women.
Also Check: What Is Grade 2 In Breast Cancer
Incidence Rates And The Number Of New Cases
To know whether or not breast cancer rates are changing over time, you have to compare rates, rather than the number of new cases.
For example, lets compare the number of new cases of breast cancer in U.S. in 2009 to the number of new cases in 2016. In 2009, there were an estimated 192,370 new cases of breast cancer in U.S. women . In 2016, there were an estimated 246,660 new cases .
Although more breast cancer cases occurred in 2016 than in 2009, this doesnt mean the rate of breast cancer increased over this time period.
We expect the number of cases to increase over time because the population of the U.S. increases over time . The more people there are, the more cancers there will be.
Our population is also living longer . Since age increases the risk of breast cancer, we expect to have more breast cancers over time.
To know if breast cancer rates are changing over time, we look at incidence rates, rather than the number of new cases. The incidence rate shows the number of breast cancer cases in a set population size. Its usually written as the number of cases in a population of 100,000 people.
The breast cancer incidence rate among women in 2009 was 131 and the estimated breast cancer incidence rate in 2016 was also 131 . This means there were 131 breast cancer cases per 100,000 women in the U.S. population in both time periods.
So, although the number of breast cancer cases increased over time, breast cancer rates were fairly stable.
Dont Miss: Stage 3 Lymphatic Cancer
Percent Of Breast Cancer Deaths By Age
According to the SEER statistics, between the years 2010 and 2014, the average age of diagnosis of breast cancer was 62 years. Furthermore, breast cancer in women is most often diagnosed between the ages of 55 and 64 years.
From the same statistics, the per cent of women who die from breast cancer is also highest between the ages of 55 and 64. The average age of death from breast cancer for women is a little higher at 68 years.
Recommended Reading: Can You Survive Stage 4 Metastatic Breast Cancer
Latest Breast Cancer Data
Breast cancer is the most commonly occurring cancer in women and the most common cancer overall. There were more than 2.26 million new cases of breast cancer in women in 2020.
The 10 countries with the highest rates of breast cancer in women and the highest number of deaths from breast cancer in women in 2020 are shown in the tables below.
ASR = age-standardised rates. These are a summary measure of the rate of disease that a population would have if it had a standard age structure. Standardisation is necessary when comparing populations that differ with respect to age because age has a powerful influence on the risk of dying from cancer.
What Screening Tests Are Available
The early detection programme of the statutory health insurance offers women 30 years of age and over an annual palpation examination by a physician. Women between the ages of 50 and 69 years are invited to an X-ray examination of the breast every two years as part of the mammography screening programme.
Read Also: Stage 4 Breast Cancer Survival Rate By Age
Lifetime Risk Of Breast Cancer Worldwide
Women who live in developed countries tend to have a higher lifetime risk of breast cancer than women who live in developing countries .
Although we dont know all the reasons for these differences, lifestyle and reproductive factors likely play a large role .
Low screening mammography rates and incomplete reporting can make rates of breast cancer in developing countries look lower than they truly are and may also explain some of these differences.
Mortality Rates And Number Of Breast Cancer Deaths
Sometimes its useful to have an estimate of the number of people expected to die from breast cancer in a year. This number helps show the burden of breast cancer in a group of people.
Numbers, however, can be hard to compare to each other. To compare mortality in different populations, we need to look at mortality rates rather than the number of breast cancer deaths.
Recommended Reading: Does Breast Cancer Make You Cough
Breast Cancer Rates In Men Over Time
From 2015-2019 , the breast cancer incidence rate in men, as well as in women, increased slightly .
From 2016-2020 , the breast cancer mortality rate in men declined slightly . The breast cancer mortality rate in women has also declined over time. From 2016-2020 the mortality rate in women decreased by about one percent per year .
Breast Cancer Diagnosis And Survival Rates Over The Last 27 Years
The incidence of breast cancer has risen dramatically over the last 28 years, rising from about 9,827 new cases a year in 1994, to over 20,000 new cases a year in 2022. As a result, 1 in 7 women will now be diagnosed in their lifetime.
Since NBCFs inception in 1994, thedeath rates from breast cancer in Australia have reduced by 43%. Despite this, 9 Australians will lose their lives to breast cancer every day. In 2022, there was over 3,200 deaths from breast cancer, including .
Unfortunately, despite improved survival rates, the number of deaths from breast cancer each year is still rising. This is being driven by the increase in diagnoses.
Also Check: What Are The Ways To Prevent Breast Cancer
Estimated Cases And Deaths In 2022
In 2022, approximately 287,850 new cases of invasive breast cancer and 51,400 cases of DCIS will be diagnosed among US women, and 43,250 women will die from breast cancer. Eighty-three percent of invasive breast cancers are diagnosed among women aged 50âyears and older, and 91% of breast cancer deaths occur in this age group half of breast cancer deaths occur in women 70 years or older . The median age at diagnosis for female breast cancer is 62âyears overall but is slightly younger for Hispanic , API , Black , and AIAN women than for White women , partly because of differences in population age distribution. The median age at breast cancer death is 69âyears overall but ranges from 70âyears among White women to 62âyears among Hispanic women and 63âyears among API and Black women. Although breast cancer is predominantly a female disease, approximately 2710 cases and 530 deaths are expected in men in 2022., The information provided herein applies to female breast cancer unless otherwise specified.
Association Between Hdi And The Burden Of Breast Cancer
When dividing the countries into four levels according to the HDI, very high HDI countries accounted for 45.0% of breast cancer cases and 33.8% of breast cancer deaths, while the medium and low HDI countries accounted for only 18.4% of breast cases but 30.1% of breast cancer deaths. The agestandardized incidence rates were over 2fold higher in very high/high HDI countries compared with medium/low HDI countries, while the agestandardized mortality rates in low HDI countries were 1.5fold higher than very high HDI countries . Both agespecific incidence and mortality rates increased with age and reached the summit at age 70 . Figure 4 showed the association between breast cancer rates and HDI levels according to the linear regression. The agestandardized incidence rates of breast cancer increased with HDI levels , while the agestandardized mortality rates of breast cancer decreased with HDI levels .
Association between HDI and agestandardized incidence and mortality rates of female breast cancer.
The data was obtained from the GLOBOCAN database in 2020
Abbreviations: HDI, Human Development Index
Read Also: Can Breast Cancer Spread To Lungs
Trends In Breast Cancer Deaths
Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women. The chance that a woman will die from breast cancer is about 1 in 39 .
Breast cancer death rates have been decreasing steadily since 1989, for an overall decline of 43% through 2020. The decrease in death rates is believed to be the result of finding breast cancer earlier through screening and increased awareness, as well as better treatments. However, the decline has slowed slightly in recent years.
Health Disparities In Young African Americans
In addition to these unique issues, research has shown that young African American women face even greater challenges.
- African American women under age 35 have rates of breast cancer two times higher than caucasian women under age 35.14
- African Americans under age 35 die from breast cancer three times as often as caucasian women of the same age.14
- Researchers believe that access to healthcare and the quality of healthcare available may explain these disparities. But scientists continue to investigate.
- Research also shows that young African Americans are more likely to get aggressive forms of breast cancer than anyone else.14
Read Also: Er Negative Pr Positive Breast Cancer
How Many People Survive Breast Cancer
- Almost nine in ten of women survive breast cancer for five years or more.
- Breast cancer survival is improving and has doubled in the past 40 years in the UK due to a combination of improvements in treatment and care, earlier detection through screening and a focus on targets, including faster diagnosis.
- An estimated 600,000 people are alive in the UK after a diagnosis of breast cancer. This is predicted to rise to 1.2 million in 2030.
For many the overwhelming emotional and physical effects of the disease can be long-lasting.
Every year around 11,500women and 85 men die from breast cancer in the UK thats nearly 1,000 deaths each month, 31 each day or one every 45 minutes.
Breast cancer is the fourth most common cause of cancer death in the UK.
Breast cancer is a leading cause of death in women under 50 in the UK.
What Is Secondary Breast Cancer
Secondary breast cancer is when breast cancer spreads from the breast to other parts of the body, becoming incurable. Breast cancer most commonly spreads to the bones, brain, lungs or liver.
While it cannot be cured, there are treatments that can help control certain forms of the disease for some time and relieve symptoms to help people live well for as long as possible.
There are an estimated 35,000 people living with secondary breast cancer in the UK. In around 5% of women, breast cancer has already spread by the time it is diagnosed.
Recommended Reading: Types Of Radiation For Breast Cancer
Breast Cancer Incidence Rates Worldwide
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide.
Its estimated more than 2 million new cases of breast cancer occurred worldwide among women in 2020 .
Breast cancer incidence rates around the world vary
In general, rates of breast cancer are higher in developed countries than in developing countries .
Breast Cancer Mortality Rates Over Time
From 1989-2020 , the breast cancer mortality rate in U.S. women decreased by 42 percent due to improved breast cancer treatment and early detection . Since 1989, about 431,800 breast cancer deaths in U.S. women have been avoided .
The breast cancer mortality rate in women decreased by about one percent per year from 2016-2020 . Different breast cancer mortality rate trends may have been seen in some groups of women.
You May Like: One Lymph Node Positive Breast Cancer
Take Action To Change Young Adult Breast Cancer Statistics
When all young adults affected by breast cancer work together, we can raise awareness, improve our representation in research and make each other stronger. We are dedicated to these goals, working to turn our unique challenges into opportunities for shared success. Join the movement! Become an advocate for young women with breast cancer.
Causes & Risk Factors
- Ionizing radiationincluding exposure from x-rays and CAT scansis an established environmental risk factor for breast cancer. Many risk factors for breast cancer are related to exposure to estrogen and other hormones that play a role in a womans menstrual cycle. These risk factors include early menarche, late menopause, having children late in life, never having children, and never breastfeeding. Pharmaceutical hormones, such as HRT and DES, and behaviors that affect hormone levelssuch as alcohol use and exercisealso affect risk. Women are at much higher risk than men, and the risk increases with age. Inherited genes, family history, and socioeconomic status are all associated with breast cancer risk.
- About 85% of breast cancers occur in women who have no family history of the disease.
- High-risk mutations in the breast cancer genes inherited from ones mother or father only account for about 5-10% of breast cancers.
- In 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released an update of the Toxic Substances Control Act Inventory which found there are 86,228 chemicals currently registered for commercial use in the United States.
Read Also: Where Does Metastatic Breast Cancer Spread
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Breast Cancer
There are many different signs and symptoms of breast cancer, so regularly checking your breasts for anything different or new is important.
The earlier breast cancer is diagnosed, the better the chance of successful treatment. Getting to know what your breasts look and feel like normally means its easier to spot any unusual changes and check them with your doctor. Common breast cancer signs and symptoms include:
- A lump or swelling in the breast, upper chest or armpit. You might feel the lump, but not see it.
- Changes in the size or shape of the breast
- A change in skin texture i.e. puckering or dimpling of the skin
- A change in the colour of the breast – the breast may look red or inflamed
- Rash, crusting or changes to the nipple
- Any unusual discharge from either nipple
Over a third of women in the UK do not check their breasts regularly for potential signs of breast cancer.
According to a YouGov survey commissioned by Breast Cancer Now, a third of those who do check their breasts for possible signs and symptoms dont feel confident that they would notice a change.
Asked what stops or prevents them from checking their breasts more regularly, over half forgetting to check, over a third not being in the habit of checking, a fifth not feeling confident in checking their breasts, not knowing how to check , not knowing what to look for and being worried about finding a new or unusual change .
Some factors are outside our control, including:
Risk Of Breast Cancer Across Different Ages
The risk of a woman being diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime is 1 in 7. The majority of breast cancer cases, about 80%, occur in women over the age of 50.
But breast cancer still occurs in young women, with close to 1000 women under the age of 40 projected to be diagnosed with the disease in 2022.
You May Like: Can You Get Disability For Breast Cancer