What To Expect At The Breast Clinic
Your visit to the breast clinic may take several hours.
You can take a partner, close friend or relative with you for company or support. Some people prefer to go on their own.
A doctor or specialist nurse will ask you about your symptoms
You may be asked to fill in a short questionnaire including questions about any family history of breast problems and any medication youre taking.
You will have an examination
The doctor or nurse will check the breast tissue on both sides. As part of the examination its usual to examine the lymph nodes under your arm and around your neck.
You may need further tests
These will usually include one or more of the following:
- A mammogram
- An ultrasound scan
- A core biopsy of the breast tissue and sometimes lymph nodes
- A fine needle aspiration of the breast tissue and sometimes lymph nodes
Common Types Of Breast Cancer In Men
The most common types of breast cancer are:
- invasive ductal carcinoma, which begins in the ducts that would carry milk to the nipple
- invasive lobular carcinoma, which begins in the lobules that would produce milk
- ductal carcinoma in situ, which is considered a pre-cancerous condition because cancer cells have not spread outside the duct
Breast cancer in males is a lot like breast cancer in females. However, research suggests some differences, including:
- Males tend to develop breast cancer at an older age, typically between 60 and 70.
- Males are more likely to have estrogen receptor-positive tumors.
- Male breast cancer is more likely to be associated with a BRCA2 gene mutation.
What Is Yale Medicines Approach To Detecting And Treating Breast Cancer In Men
Our radiologists are uniquely qualified to diagnose even the rarest forms of breast cancer, including male breast cancerearly and accurately. Our radiologists who subspecialize in breast imaging are among the most highly skilled leaders in the field. They are nationally and internationally recognized for their skill in diagnosing breast cancer. Additionally, our radiologists conduct research on 3D mammography and dense breast imaging, which is advancing the field of radiology.
A man with a breast-related complaint will be scheduled for a diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound within a few days, Dr. Andrejeva-Wright says. If a suspicious mass is seen, then a needle biopsy is scheduled soon after. If a diagnosis of breast cancer is made, our intake specialists coordinate all necessary appointments with the patient as soon as possible, so that treatment can begin quickly.
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Brca2 Inherited Gene Mutations And Cancer Risk
Men who have a BRCA2 inherited gene mutation, and to a lesser degree men who have a BRCA1 inherited gene mutation, have an increased risk of breast cancer .
For example, the lifetime risk of breast cancer is :
- About 50-80 in 1,000 men with a BRCA2 inherited gene mutation
- About 12 in 1,000 men with a BRCA1 inherited gene mutation
- About 1 in 769 men in the general population
Men who have a BRCA1/2 gene mutation also have an increased risk for prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer and melanoma .
Other inherited gene mutations are under study for a possible link to breast cancer in men .
Learn more about BRCA2 inherited gene mutations and cancer risk in men.
For a summary of research studies on BRCA1/2 inherited gene mutations and cancer, visit the Breast Cancer Research Studies section.
BRCA2 inherited gene mutations and genetic testing
While 5-10 percent of breast cancers in women are thought to be due to inherited gene mutations, up to 40 percent of breast cancers in men may be related to BRCA2 inherited gene mutations alone . This means men who get breast cancer are more likely to have an inherited gene mutation than women who get breast cancer.
Your health care provider can recommend a genetic counselor so you can learn more about genetic testing.
Which Men Are More Likely To Get Breast Cancer
It’s rare for a man under age 35 to get breast cancer. Your chance of getting breast cancer goes up with age. Most breast cancers in men happen between ages 60 and 70.
Other things that raise the odds for male breast cancer include:
- Breast cancer in a close female relative
- History of radiation exposure of the chest
- Enlarged breasts because of drug or hormone treatments, some infections, or poisons
- Severe liver disease, called cirrhosis
- Diseases of the testicles such as mumps orchitis, a testicular injury, or an undescended testicle
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How Is Breast Cancer Similar In Both Men And Women
Both men and women may have breast cancer cells in the lymph nodes. The patterns of the spread of cancer are similar. The staging system for male breast cancer is the same as the staging system for female breast cancer. Breast cancer in both men and women are assessed in the same way to determine the prognosis. This includes the size of the lesion and whether or not lymph nodes have cancer cells. These factors affect the choice and outcome of treatment. Overall survival rates are similar in both men and women with breast cancer. Although male breast cancer is often diagnosed at a later stage.
Breast Cancer In Men Biologically Different Than Breast Cancer In Women
- Tags:Early-Stage: Stage 0 — DCIS , Early-Stage: Stage IA, Early-Stage: Stage IB, Early-Stage: Stage IIA, Early-Stage: Stage IIB, Early-Stage: Stage IIIA, Locally Advanced-Stage: Stage IIIB, Locally Advanced-Stage: Stage IIIC, and Metastatic/Advanced-Stage: Stage IV
Breast cancer in men is rare, but it does happen. Less than 1% of all breast cancers occur in men. For men, the lifetime risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer is about 1 in 1,000.
A study has found that the characteristics of male breast cancer associated with outcomes are different than the characteristics of female breast cancer that are associated with outcomes.
The study was presented on March 10, 2016 at the European Breast Cancer Conference. Read the abstract of Pathologic prognostic factors of male breast cancer: results of the EORTC 10085/TBCRC/BIG/NABG International Male Breast Cancer Program.
In the study, which was part of the International Male Breast Cancer Program, the researchers looked at 1,203 male breast cancer tumor samples from 1,483 men from 23 centers in nine countries.
The researchers looked at a number of cancer characteristics, including:
The researchers found that low tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte levels and high levels of fibrous tissue in male breasts were strongly associated with worse outcomes in male breast cancer. Cancer grade, which is strongly associated with outcomes in female breast cancer, wasnt strongly associated with male breast cancer outcomes.
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How Do Health Care Professionals Diagnose Male Breast Cancer
Diagnosis of breast cancer requires identifying cancer cells in tissue specimens obtained by taking a sample of the growth — also called a “mass” or “tumor” — by the technique of biopsy. Since men have little breast tissue, cancers in male breasts are easily palpable and are often found on self-examination. Also, they are therefore easily accessible to biopsy. Fine needle aspiration or needle biopsy of a suspicious mass can usually establish a diagnosis. A doctor inserts a needle into the mass to withdraw tissue from the suspicious area. Microscopic examination of the tissue by a pathologist establishes the diagnosis.
Other techniques that may be used to diagnose breast cancer in men include incisional or excisional biopsy of a breast mass. If nipple discharge is present, microscopic examination of a smear of the discharge can sometimes establish the diagnosis.
What Is Staging Of Male Breast Cancer
Doctors carry out staging to determine the extent to which a cancer has spread within the body. Staging of breast cancer in men is carried out identically to the staging of breast cancer in women. Imaging studies such as X-rays, CT scans, magnetic resonance imaging , ultrasound, and bone scans may be performed to evaluate the presence and extent of metastatic disease once the initial diagnosis of breast cancer had been made. The American Joint Committee on Cancer TNM staging system takes into account the tumor size, lymph node involvement by cancer, and presence of metastasis. For 2018, a new edition of the AJCC staging system also takes into account biologic characteristics of the tumor including estrogen receptor and progesterone receptor status, tumor grade , and the presence of the HER-2 protein on the cancer cells.
- T: tumor size and extent of local spread
- N: extent of tumor involvement of lymph nodes in the axillary region. Since the nipple area is rich in lymphatic vessels, male breast cancer commonly spreads via the lymphatic channels to the axillary lymph nodes.
- M: presence of distant metastases
Stage 0 refers to intraductal carcinoma or ductal cancer in situ, in which the cancer cells have not spread beyond the boundaries of the ducts themselves.
In Stage I breast cancer, the tumor is 2 cm or less in greatest diameter and has not spread to the lymph nodes or to other sites in the body.
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What Are The Types Of Male Breast Cancer
Breast cancer in men usually begins in the breast ducts. Ducts are tubes that carry milk to the nipple. Although men have milk ducts and glands that create milk, they dont work like the ducts and milk-producing glands in women.
The types of male breast cancer include:
- Invasive ductal carcinoma: Cancer begins in the breast ducts and spreads to other parts of the breast. Cancer cells may also spread to other areas of the body. Invasive ductal carcinoma is the most common type of breast cancer in people regardless of gender.
- Invasive lobular carcinoma: Cancer begins in the lobules . Lobular breast cancer can also spread to other parts of the body.
- Ductal carcinoma in situ : Cancer cells grow in the lining of the breast ducts. They have not spread to other parts of the breast or the rest of the body. Ductal carcinoma in situ is uncommon in men.
- Inflammatory breast cancer: Usually a type of invasive ductal carcinoma, inflammatory breast cancer is very rare in men. The breast tissue is swollen and red. It feels warm to the touch, and the skin may be dimpled, but there is no lump.
- Pagets disease of the nipple: Cancer cells grow in the ducts and spread to the nipple and the area around the nipple. Pagets disease of the nipple is also called Pagets disease of the breast or mammary Paget disease.
How Does Breast Cancer Occur In Men And What Are Its Symptoms
Posted in: Breast Cancer Treatment by Dr. Tarang Krishna Posted Date: 15 Jan, 2020
Breast cancer in men is a rare issue. Since they have breast tissue, they can get breast cancer. A little less than 1% of all breast cancers are cases of breast cancer in men, and only one in a thousand men are diagnosed with breast cancer.
It is usually detected as a hard lump under the nipple and areola. Some men are not aware that they can get breast cancer and may not notice a change or not see it as important. Also, they may be embarrassed about a change in their breast or chest area and put off seeing a doctor resulting in a delay in diagnosis.
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What Is Breast Cancer In Men
Breast cancer occurs mainly in women, but men can get it, too. Many people do not realize that men have breast tissue and that they can develop breast cancer. Cells in nearly any part of the body can become cancer and can spread to other areas.
Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to grow out of control. These cells usually form a tumor that can often be seen on an x-ray or felt as a lump. The tumor is malignant if the cells can grow into surrounding tissues or spread to distant areas of the body.
To learn more about how cancers start and spread, see Cancer Basics.
After Breast Cancer Has Been Diagnosed Tests Are Done To Find Out If Cancer Cells Have Spread Within The Breast Or To Other Parts Of The Body
After breast cancer has been diagnosed, tests are done to find out if cancercells have spread within the breast or to other parts of the body. This process is called staging. The information gathered from the staging process determines the stage of the disease. It is important to know the stage in order to plan treatment. Breast cancer in men is staged the same as it is in women. The spread of cancer from the breast tolymph nodes and other parts of the body appears to be similar in men and women.
The following tests and procedures may be used in the staging process:
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Diagnosis Of Breast Cancer In Men
Your doctor will investigate any new or unusual breast changes using a variety of diagnostic tests. These tests are the same as the ones used to study breast changes in women. They may include:
- Clinical breast examination, and taking a complete personal medical history.
- Mammogram a low level x-ray of the breast. Though mammograms are not recommended for male breast cancer screening in Australia, they can be used to help diagnose breast cancer in men.
- Ultrasound an imaging technique that uses sound waves to look at breast changes. It may help to determine whether a lump found in the breast is a fluid-filled cyst or solid .
- Biopsy your doctor may recommend a biopsy if an abnormality is found during clinical examination and/or imaging tests. A biopsy involves removing a small sample of tissue and a specialist examining the sample under microscope.
If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, your doctor may send you for further tests to help determine the extent of cancer spread in the body. Additional tests will be done to determine the molecular characteristics of the tumour, such the cancers hormone receptor status. These tests will help you and your doctors decide on the best treatment options.
Coping With Breast Cancer
If your results show you have breast cancer, you may feel a range of emotions such as shock, fear, disbelief, anger, guilt and sadness.
You may find it hard to take in or believe what you are being told.
Try not to keep your feelings to yourself or cope on your own. There are people who can support you, so dont be afraid to ask for help.
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What Is The Prognosis For Men With Breast Cancer
It depends on the kind, stage, and type of breast cancer. In general, when male breast cancer is detected at an early stage, men have a similar chance of recovery as women with breast cancer.
However, breast cancer is often diagnosed in men at a later stage because many may not routinely examine their breasts, arent aware that breast cancer can occur in men, or are embarrassed about having a breast-related complaint, says Dr. Andrejeva-Wright.
Later detection of breast cancer means the cancer is harder to cure and may have spread to other areas of the body, such as the lymph nodes.
Are You A Man Who Has Been Diagnosed With Breast Cancer
Many people are surprised to learn that men can develop breast cancer. Fortunately, breast cancer in men is rare and it accounts for less than 1% of all cancers in men.
The good news is that most men survive breast cancer. In Australia, 85% of men diagnosed with breast cancer are alive five years later. Most men fully recover and the breast cancer does not return.
Men of all ages can be affected by breast cancer, however, the average age of diagnosis is 69.
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Men And Breast Cancer: Statistics
According to the American Cancer Society:
Breast cancer in men is rare less than 1 percent of all breast cancer occurs in men.
About 2,350 new cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed in men in the U.S in 2015.
Breast cancer is about 100 times more common in women.
About 440 men in the U.S. died from breast cancer in 2015.
Some people use statistics to figure out their chances of getting cancer. Or they use them to try to figure out their chance of being cured. Because no two people are alike, statistics cant be used to predict what will happen to one person. These statistics describe large groups of people. They dont take into account a person’s own risk factors, such as family history, behaviors, or cancer screenings. If you have questions, talk with your healthcare provider.
What Is The Outlook For Men With Breast Cancer
The prognosis for men who have breast cancer depends on the tumors size and if it has spread. These are reflected in the cancer stage. In general, a higher stage indicates a worse prognosis. Early diagnosis can improve the outlook significantly. But because men dont get regular breast cancer screenings like women, the first sign of cancer is usually a lump. By that time, the cancer has often spread to the lymph nodes or other areas of the body.
Healthcare providers measure cancer outlook by the five-year survival rate. Overall, the survival rate for male breast cancer is 84%. The survival rate for men with breast cancer that has not spread beyond the original tumor is 97%. For men with cancer that has spread to other parts of the body, the survival rate is about 22%.