What About Cordless Phones
Cordless phones, commonly used in homes, have base units that are plugged into telephone jacks and wired to a local telephone service. They are not considered cell phones. Cordless phones operate at about 1/600 the power of cell phones, so they are much less likely to be a concern in terms of health effects.
Myth: Breast Cancer Always Causes A Lump You Can Feel
People are sometimes under the impression that breast cancer always causes a lump that can be felt during a self-exam. They might use this as a reason to skip mammograms, thinking theyll be able to feel any change that might indicate a problem. However, breast cancer doesnt always cause a lump. By the time it does, the cancer might have already moved beyond the breast into the lymph nodes. Although performing breast self-exams is certainly a good idea, it isnt a substitute for regular screening with mammography.
There are some other myths about what types of breast lumps are less worrisome, such as: If the lump is painful, it isnt breast cancer, and If you can feel a lump that is smooth, and/or that moves around freely under the skin, its not breast cancer. Any lump or unusual mass that can be felt through the skin needs to be checked out by a healthcare professional. Although most lumps are benign , there is always the possibility of breast cancer.
As Community member Simone RC says, that you only need to worry if your lump is hard, not movable, and not smooth. Every single doctor who felt my always-lumpy breasts said they never would have thought what I felt was suspicious. I noticed the new lump on one of my best old lumps. Smooth, movable, soft, like a grape cut in half lengthwise. Thank goodness my gynecologist took me seriously despite having my annual 3D mammogram completely clear a few months before.
No Carrying Your Cell Phone In Your Bra Will Not Cause Breast Cancer No Matter What Dr Oz Says
I dont think very highly of Dr. Oz.
This time around, Dr. Oz caught my attention about a week and a half ago. I had planned on blogging about it last week, but thecase of the Amish girl with cancer whose parents stopped her chemotherapy after less than two full courses, thus endangering her life, intervened. I figured that I probably wouldnt get back to Oz, butwouldnt you know it?a week later Im still annoyed at this story. So better late than never.
There was none of that at all. Zero. Nada. Zip. In fact, I was shocked at how evidence-free this whole segment was. Usually Oz at least tries to slather a patina of scientific evidence on his pseudoscience. OK, maybe not usually, but he does at least sometimes try when hes not doing a story on alternative medicine, complementary and alternative medicine, or integrative medicine, anyway. Not here. Its as if Dr. Ozs producers werent even trying for this one.
Dr. Oz then points to an image on a screen in the studio, repeating how he understands how convenient bras are to carry things, but then goes on to warn that he never wants you to do this again. A breast surgeon like myself can recognize the image immediately as a breast ultrasound, with a mass in it. The mass is darker than the surrounding tissue and irregular. It looks suspicious, and it is suspicious, because Oz tells us that its breast cancer, which is never convenient.
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Does It Mean I Have Breast Cancer
Being recalled doesnt mean you have breast cancer. And the majority of women who are recalled dont have cancer.
About four out of every 100 women screened are recalled. Youre slightly more likely to be recalled after your first mammogram.
Of these four people recalled, three will not have breast cancer. They might have a normal breast change or a benign condition.
Myth: Carrying Your Cell Phone In Your Bra Can Cause Breast Cancer
Media reports have raised concerns that carrying a cell phone in your bra might increase breast cancer risk. There have been some cases of younger women developing breast cancer after habitually carrying their cell phones in their bras. In 2013, the Dr. Oz Show further fueled these concerns by warning women never to carry their cell phones in their bras.
The research simply isnt there to support this claim, though. To date, most studies have focused on whether the radiofrequency radiation given off by cell phones can increase the risk of brain tumors. This research hasnt found a link, but the issue is still being studied.
Still, cell phone manufacturers often do recommend keeping your device away from your body as much as possible. Although there is no proven breast cancer link, you may wish to avoid wearing your cellphone in your bra or chest pocket until more research is available.
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You Can ‘maximally Reduce’ Your Risk Of Breast Cancer By Taking These 4 Steps According To Funk
1. Eat a whole food, plant-based diet: ” tons of fruits and vegetables, legumes , nuts whole grains. These foods act like phytonutrients, go into your bloodstream to seek and destroy cancer cells.”
2. Get to an ideal body weight: “And stay there for the rest of your life. Do not be overweight or obese.”
3. Exercise:“You’ve got to bust a move like five hours a week.”
4. Limit alcohol: “No more than one drink a day.”
Can Chemicals In The Environment Cause Breast Cancer
Theres no conclusive evidence that exposure to chemicals in the environment increases your risk of breast cancer.
Lots of studies have looked at the relationship between breast cancer and chemicals in the environment such as pesticides, traffic fumes and plastics, but theres no clear evidence of any links.
It can be very difficult to work out the effects of individual chemicals when we are exposed to low levels of thousands of chemicals during our lifetime.
Some studies have suggested that women who are exposed to chemicals in their jobs, for example in the manufacturing industry, may be at higher risk of breast cancer. But the evidence is weak and more research is needed. Employers are legally required to limit exposure to chemicals that may cause cancer.
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How Do Cell Phones Work
Cell phones send signals to nearby cell towers using RF waves. This is a form of energy in the electromagnetic spectrum that falls between FM radio waves and microwaves. Like FM radio waves, microwaves, visible light, and heat, RF waves are a form of non-ionizing radiation. They dont have enough energy to cause cancer by directly damaging the DNA inside cells. RF waves are different from stronger types of radiation such as x-rays, gamma rays, and ultraviolet rays. Ionizing radiation can break the chemical bonds in DNA, which might lead to cancer.
The electromagnetic spectrum illustration shows the possible frequencies of electromagnetic energy, ranging from extremely low frequencies to exposures from extremely high frequencies , and includes both non-ionizing and ionizing radiation.
Image credit: National Cancer Institute
At very high levels, RF waves can heat up body tissues. But the levels of energy given off by cell phones are much lower, and are not enough to raise temperatures in the body.
Myth: If I Dont Have A Family History Of Breast Cancer I Wont Get It
Many people think of breast cancer as an inherited disease. But only about 510% of breast cancers are believed to be hereditary, meaning theyre caused by abnormal changes in certain genes passed from parent to child. 1 The vast majority of people who get breast cancer have no family history, suggesting that other factors must be at work, such as environment and lifestyle.
But doctors often cant explain why one person gets breast cancer and another doesnt. The biggest risk factors are simply being a woman and growing older. Over time, healthy breast cells can develop mutations on their own, eventually turning into cancer cells.
Still, if you have a strong family history of breast cancer on either your mothers or your fathers side, this is an important risk factor that should be taken seriously. If there are one or more cases of breast cancer in close blood relatives, especially before age 50, and/or other cancers such as ovarian and prostate cancer in your family, share this information with your doctor.
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Research Studies On Abortion And Breast Cancer
Researchers have looked at the possible link between abortion and breast cancer for many years, but this has been a difficult area to study.
The most reliable way to know if something causes cancer would be to do a randomized study. This means that you would take a large number of people, expose half of them to the thing that could cause cancer , and dont expose the other half to the possible carcinogen. Whether someone is in the exposed or non-exposed group would be chosen at random. As long as the 2 groups were similar to start with in terms of risk factors for cancer, any difference in cancer risk between the 2 groups would likely be because of being exposed to the possible carcinogen. Of course, it isnt practical or ethical to study the effects of many things on cancer risk with this kind of study. This is especially true for effects of abortion.
Instead, to look at the effects of abortion on cancer risk, we have to use observational studies. These kinds of studies gather information about the people in them, often by asking questions or looking at medical records. Then the researchers try to see if certain factors are linked to certain outcomes.
What Are Other Possible Health Effects From Cell Phone Use
The most consistent health risk associated with cell phone use is distracted driving and vehicle accidents . Several other potential health effects have been reported with cell phone use. Neurologic effects are of particular concern in young persons. However, studies of memory, learning, and cognitive function have generally produced inconsistent results .
Surgeon Mom Of 3 Struck With Same Breast Cancer As Her Patients: ‘i Was Beyond Shocked’
I love busting myths with science because, you know, there are enough things to worry about that do cause breast cancer, Funk said on GMA. I like to take a load off and let you know what does not cause breast cancer.
In the United States, 236,968 women and 2,141 men were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2014, according to the most recent statistics available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although breast cancer is often seen as a genetic disease, fewer than 10 percent of breast cancer victims carry an inherited genetic mutation associated with the ailment, noted Funk, a renowned, surgical breast-care specialist and the doctor of actress Angelina Jolie.
There will always be senseless cancers that happen in someone who is young or someone who does everything right,” Funk said. “But for the vast majority, a solid 80 percent, of these cancers around the world, it does make sense and it doesnt come from your family.”
She added, It comes from the daily choices that women are making that have to do largely with nutrition and lifestyle behavior.
The Thresholds For Requesting Follow
It can be a challenge for radiologists to find a reasonable cutoff point in deciding whether a 6 month follow-up diagnostic mammogram is necessary. Secondly specialists must decide whether a biopsy is more appropriate, or not.
Generally speaking, if the first screening mammography results are highly suggestive of malignancy, then a core-needle biopsy should probably be the next step.
When the initial mammogram reveals an abnormality that is probably benign, then additional imaging is generally useful to help to decide whether to biopsy or not.
Specifically, the radiologist will want to determine whether the lesion is a solid mass or a cyst. In addition, the radiologist will also want to take a closer look at the margins. If all indications of the second imaging studies are for a benign or likely benign lesion, then subsequent follow up imaging studies in about 6 months is probably a reasonable approach, without the necessity of a biopsy.
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Do Underwire Bras Cause Breast Cancer
Underwire bras do not increase your risk of breast cancer.
There have been some concerns that the wires in the cup of underwire bras may restrict the flow of lymph fluid in the breast causing toxins to build up in the area. However, theres no reliable evidence to support this.
If your bra is too tight or too small, the wires can dig into your breasts and cause discomfort, pain or swelling. Find out more about wearing a well-fitting bra.
Specialist Opinion On Cellphones And Breast Cancer
While there are many environmental factors to consider, there are number of clinicians observing clinical evidence that has led them to believe that storing a cell phone in the bra, can in some instances lead to breast cancer.
Dr John West MD oncologist and surgical director of Breastlink and co-founder of BeAware foundation
We have clinical evidence that particularly young women who use their cell phone for prolonged periods of time develop a very unusual form of cancer. Whats so impressive about this is that these cancers occur right underneath the skin where the cellphone was in contact with the breast. We see multiple cancers and the pattern and distribution of the cancer is extremely unusual and especially at such a very young age. The cancers are roughly the same distribution as the cellphone and appear in the same area where the cellphone was placed in direct contact with the breast.
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Where To Get Screened
Women ages 50 to 74 can call the nearest Ontario Breast Screening Program location to make an appointment .
Women in the North West and Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant regions may be eligible for screening in one of our mobile screening coaches.
If you think you may be at high risk for breast cancer, talk to your doctor about a referral to the High Risk Ontario Breast Screening Program based on family or medical history.
Who Should Get Screened
- If you are age 50 to 74, the Ontario Breast Screening Program recommends that most women in your age group get screened every 2 years with mammography.
- If you are age 30 to 69 and meet the eligibility criteria for the High Risk Ontario Breast Screening Program, the program recommends that you get screened every year with both mammography and breast magnetic resonance imaging .
To find out when and where to get screened, and learn about mammograms, the Ontario Breast Screening Program and more, go to the Screening for Breast Cancer page.
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The Likelihood Of Diagnostic Call Back Mammogram Being Breast Cancer Increases Over The Years Of Annual Breast Cancer Screening
Specialists estimate that over a 10 year period, about one third of the women who had a call-back for a diagnostic mammogram will have benign breast disease. So, in other words a false positive radiologist-accuracy-statistic.
However, the more regularly a woman has breast cancer screening, for example every year or 2 years, the greater the chance of breast cancer if a call back is necessary. So, the chances of detecting breast cancer naturally increase over time with regular mammograms.
Why Studies Can’t Always Give Answers
Research canât tell us everything we need to know. Many studies have built-in weaknesses that can affect how accurate their findings are. They include:
- The results of studies done in animals or cells may not apply to people.
- People may not have been regularly using cell phones long enough to tell if they’re linked to cancer.
- Other habits besides cell phone use may affect cancer rates, but these habits werenât studied.
- People donât always remember how much or how long theyâve done something, like use a cell phone. This can make a study’s results less accurate.
- Technology in cell phones keeps changing over time, which can affect study results.
- Most studies are done in adults, which means their results may not apply to children.
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Positive Mammogram Results And Statistics
If you see the word positive on a mammogram report, and its a call-back, the word positive is for STATISTICS. The statisticians want to score true positive and false positive.
Screening Mammography Programs are copy-cats of each other and they all have statisticians. Somewhere, long ago, a statistician wrote a sample letter to explain mammogram results to patients. The statistician used the word positive in the results. The same letter wording was then copied from state to state, province to province, country to country.
Furthermore, statisticians calculate accuracy using 4 values: True positives, True negatives, False positives, False negatives.
What Expert Agencies Say
The American Cancer Society does not have any official position or statement on whether or not radiofrequency radiation from cell phones, cell phone towers, or other sources is a cause of cancer. ACS generally looks to other expert organizations to determine if something causes cancer , including:
- The International Agency for Research on Cancer , which is part of the World Health Organization
- The US National Toxicology Program , which is formed from parts of several different government agencies, including the National Institutes of Health , the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , and the Food and Drug Administration
Other major organizations might also comment on the ability of certain exposures to cause cancer.
What they say about cell phone towers
So far, neither IARC nor the NTP have classified the cancer-causing potential of RF waves from cell phone towers specifically. However, some other agencies have commented on cell tower safety.
The US Federal Communications Commission has said this about cell phone towers near homes or schools:
What they say about RF radiation in general
Based on a review of studies published up until 2011, the International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified RF radiation as possibly carcinogenic to humans, based on limited evidence of a possible increase in risk for brain tumors among cell phone users, and inadequate evidence for other types of cancer.
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