What Is Different About Breast Cancer In Younger Women
- Diagnosing breast cancer in younger women is more difficult because their breast tissue is generally denser than the breast tissue in older women, and routine screening is not recommended.
- Breast cancer in younger women may be more aggressive and less likely to respond to treatment.
- Women who are diagnosed with breast cancer at a younger age are more likely to have genetic mutations predisposing them to breast and other cancers.
- Younger women who have breast cancer may ignore the warning signssuch as a breast lump or unusual dischargebecause they believe they are too young to get breast cancer. This can lead to a delay in diagnosis and poorer outcomes.
- Some healthcare providers may also dismiss breast lumps or other symptoms in young women or adopt a “wait and see” approach.
- Breast cancer poses additional challenges for younger women as it can involve issues concerning sexuality, fertility, and pregnancy after breast cancer treatment.
Warning Signs Suggestive Of Breast Cancer
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If a doctor says, Teens dont get breast cancer, find another doctor. Though this statement is no reason to panic, it is medically FALSE.
Remember, if just ONE person on the planet of a particular age group has a certain medical condition, then its FALSE to state, People in that age group dont get that condition.
The lump seems fixed in place; does not move around.
Its harder than just rubbery. 17
It may be painful, but not usually.
Absence of nipple discharge or puckering does NOT rule out a malignancy.
If youre still panicking, even though your doctor has assured you that youre in perfect health, then turn that fear into a full-force commitment to healthy lifestyle habits.
Do not smoke or drink. Avoid illegal drugs. Snack on natural foods like fruits, vegetables, green salads, nuts and seeds. EXERCISE
Dr. Johnson performs lumpectomies, and skin-sparing and nipple-sparing mastectomies, breast ultrasounds, needle core biopsies, infusaport placements, genetic testing and counseling, plus works with radiation oncologists to treat breast cancer using intraoperative radiation therapy.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. Shes also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.;;
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.
Read Also: How To Tell Your Family You Have Breast Cancer
Breast Cancer Screening In Teens
Although it is not typically recommended for women under 40 to undergo breast screening annually, its important for those teens experiencing symptoms to receive breast screening. Regular screening done at least every 3 years is recommended for women in their 20s. However, the American Cancer Society recommends that all women know how their breasts look and feel, and report any changes to their doctors. For younger women, digital mammography is recommended rather than a standard mammogram. It is most effective at identifying abnormalities in dense breast tissues.;
Screening Guidelines For Women At Above
MSKs breast cancer experts have developed separate guidelines for women who have a higher-than-average breast cancer risk for the following reasons:
- family history of breast cancer in a first-degree relative
- history of atypical hyperplasia
- history of lobular carcinoma in situ
- history of mantle radiation before the age of 32
- genetic predisposition for breast cancer
If you have an above-average risk of breast cancer for the reasons listed above, MSK doctors recommend the guidelines below.
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Prognosis For Breast Cancer In Cats
Cats usually survive for about 12 months with breast cancer, but the survival time depends on the treatment and the time of diagnosis.
Unfortunately, breast cancer in cats carries a poor prognosis. This is likely because, by the time the disease is noticed, its often very well established and has started to spread.
The average survival time of cats with breast cancer is 12 months. Cats tend to survive longer if surgery and chemotherapy are undertaken, and if the lump is smaller at time of diagnosis.
Unique Challenges For Young Adults
Breast cancer in young adults is just different. We are at a different phase of our lives and encounter unique challenges compared to older persons. These challenges may significantly impact our quality and length of life. Some of the unique challenges and issues young adults face:
- The possibility of early menopause and sexual dysfunction brought on by breast cancer treatment
- Fertility issues, because breast cancer treatment can affect a womanâs ability and plans to have children
- Many young women are raising small children while enduring treatment and subsequent side effects
- Young breast cancer survivors have a higher prevalence of psychosocial issues such as anxiety and depression13
- Questions about pregnancy after diagnosis
- Heightened concerns about body image, especially after breast cancer-related surgery and treatment
- Whether married or single, intimacy issues may arise for women diagnosed with breast cancer
- Challenges to financial stability due to workplace issues, lack of sufficient health insurance and the cost of cancer care
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What Is The Average American Womans Risk Of Developing Breast Cancer During Her Lifetime
Based on current incidence rates, 12.9% of women born in the United States today will develop breast cancer at some time during their lives . This estimate, from the most recent SEER Cancer Statistics Review , is based on breast cancer statistics for the years 2015 through 2017.;
This estimate means that, if the current incidence rate stays the same, a woman born today has about a 1 in 8 chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer at some time during her life. On the other hand, the chance that she will never have breast cancer is 87.1%, or about 7 in 8.;
For men born in the United States today, the lifetime risk of breast cancer is 0.13%, based on breast cancer statistics for the years 2015 through 2017. This means that a man born today has about a 1 in 800 chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer at some time during his life.
Treatment Of Breast Cancer In Cats
The first stage of treatment requires surgical removal. Whilst its theoretically possible to remove just the lump, if its small, the malignancy of breast cancer in cats means that vets normally recommend a mastectomy- removal of the breasts.
This can be removal of a single breast with the lump in it, removal of all of the breasts on one side or removal of all the mammary tissue . A strip mastectomy is the most common route, balancing the difficulty of the surgery and recovery time with the biggest benefits for the cat.
Unfortunately, even with all the breast tissue and associated lymph nodes removed, the cancer is usually still present. Microscopic cancer cells are often already in the lymphatic system or blood vessels, and its impossible to remove them all. Therefore, chemotherapy or radiation therapy may also be required.
Your veterinarian will likely consult with a veterinary oncologist to find the best option for your cat. The type of chemotherapy depends on the tumor and the patient, but doxorubicin is a common chemotherapeutic drug choice for mammary cancer in cats. The sooner this chemotherapy is started, the better the prognosis.
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Should You Talk To Your Doctor About Breast Cancer
Understanding breast cancer risk factors, knowing your personal risk of developing breast cancer, and recognizing the signs and symptoms of breast cancer can help women seek the care that they need, when they need it.
Take our Breast Cancer Risk Quiz to learn more about your personal risk. The quiz takes less than one minute to complete.
If you are 40 years or older, schedule a mammogram. The Breast Center along with The American Medical Association, The American College of Radiology, the American Cancer Society, the Society of Breast Imaging, and the National Cancer Institute recommend that women start getting a screening mammogram every year starting at age 40.
You dont have to wait until youre 40 to talk to your doctor about breast cancer, though. Meet with the specialists at the Breast Center if you have questions or concerns about breast cancer or breast health. Request an appointment online or call 479-442-6266.
A Family History Of Breast Cancer
Having someone in your family with breast cancer doesnt automatically mean your own risk is increased. For most people, having a relative with breast cancer does not increase their risk.
However, a small number of women and men have an increased risk of developing breast cancer because they have a significant family history.
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How Do Young People Get This Disease In The First Place
Dr. Johnson explains, The exact etiology is unknown, as it is in most breast cancers. Young women are more known to have a genetic mutation associated with their breast cancer as opposed to older women, but this has not been demonstrated to be the leading risk factor.
More research is needed to identify causative factors in this patient population.
Though the National Cancer Institute says that breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in females 15 to 54, this isnt as frightening as it seems.
First off, included in this statistic are women 50 to 54. In fact, the inclusion of women 40 to 49 is also significant.
The vast majority of those cancer deaths in that age range are in women over 40.
But still, what about the inclusion of teens in this statistic?
That teenagers 15 to 19 are included in this statistic simply reflects the fact that teens are less likely to die from heart disease, Alzheimers disease, liver disease, kidney failure and stroke!
Thus, the statistic of 15 to 54 needs to be put into some serious context.
Another point to consider: No matter how rare a medical condition is in a certain demographic, its very existence in that demographic means that the answer must be Yes when the question is asked if it can occur in that specific demographic.
In other words, if only ONE 17-year-old in the history of mankind developed breast cancer, this would validate saying, Yes, a 17-year-old can get breast cancer.
How Is Breast Cancer Treated In Younger Women
Treatment decisions are made based whether or not it has spread beyond the breast, as well as the woman’s general health and personal circumstances.
Treatment options include:
Surgery: either a lumpectomy, which involves removing the tumor and some surrounding tissue, or a mastectomy, which is the removal of a breast.
Radiation is generally used following a lumpectomy, and chemotherapyand hormone therapy often are recommended after surgery to help destroy any remaining cancer cells and prevent a return.
Breast cancer treatment can affect your sexuality, fertility, and pregnancy. If youd like to have children, talk to your doctor it before you begin treatment.
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Avoid Birth Control Pills Particularly After Age 35 Or If You Smoke
Birth control pills have both risks and benefits. The younger a woman is, the lower the risks are. While women are taking birth control pills, they have a slightly increased risk of breast cancer. This risk goes away quickly, though, after stopping the pill. The risk of stroke and heart attack is also increased while on the pill particularly if a woman smokes. However, long-term use can also have important benefits, like lowering the risk of ovarian cancer, colon cancer and uterine cancer not to mention unwanted pregnancy so theres also a lot in its favor. If youre very concerned about breast cancer, avoiding birth control pills is one option to lower risk.
How Quickly Breast Cancer Develops
You may have heard remarks that cancer has been present for five years before it is diagnosed, and this may sometimes be true.
The actual time it takes for breast cancer to grow from a single cancer cell to a cancerous tumor is unknown, as estimates based on doubling time assume that this is constant throughout the duration of tumor growth.
If doubling time were constant, cancer with a doubling time of 200 days would take 20 years to develop into a detectable tumor, and a doubling time of 100 days would take 10 years to be evident on exam.
In contrast, a breast tumor with a doubling time of 20 days would take only 2 years to develop.
Since the majority of studies have found the average doubling time to be between 50 days and 200 days, it’s likely that most breast cancers that are diagnosed began at least 5 years earlier .
Also Check: Don Harrington Breast Cancer Center
Metastatic Breast Cancer Statistics
The number of women under 40 being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer is increasing.
Metastatic breast cancer means that the cancer has advanced to stage 4 and has moved beyond the breast tissue into other areas of the body, such as the bones or the brain. Survival rates are lower for cancer that has metastasized to other parts of the body.
According to the American Cancer Society , the 5-year survival rate for those with breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body is 27 percent for women of all ages. However, one found no significant differences in median survival rate between younger and older women with metastatic breast cancer.
When You Can’t Find Your Family History
While many women already know if their mother, sister, or daughter have had breast cancer, you might not have this information.
If your close family members passed away at a young age, if some of them didn’t have access to health care , if you were adopted, or if members of your family have been otherwise separated, you might not know which illnesses run in your family.
While family history is important information, breast cancer screenings are the most important tools for early detection, whether or not you have a family history of the disease.
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Types Of Breast Lumps That Teens Can Get
The most common type of breast cancer found in teens is secretory adenocarcinoma. This is generally a slow growing, nonaggressive cancer.
Though theres little chance of this type of cancer spreading to other parts of the body, spread to local lymph nodes has been noted in a few cases.
Most breast lumps in teenage girls are fibroadenomas, which are noncancerous. An overgrowth of connective tissue in the breast causes fibroadenomas.
The lump is usually hard and rubbery, and you can move it around with your fingers. Fibroadenomas account for 91 percent of all solid breast masses in girls younger than 19 years old.
Other less common breast lumps in teens include cysts, which are noncancerous fluid-filled sacs.
Banging or injuring breast tissue, possibly during a fall or while playing sports, can also cause lumps.
If you feel anything unusual in your breast, see your doctor. They will ask:
- about your familys medical history
- when you discovered the lump
- if theres nipple discharge
- if the lump hurts
If anything looks or feels suspicious, your doctor will have you undergo an ultrasound. This test uses sound waves to see into your breasts. It can help determine whether a lump is solid, which is an indication of cancer.
If its fluid-filled, that will most likely indicate a cyst. Your doctor may also insert a fine needle into the lump to draw out tissue and test it for cancer.
Family History Of Breast Cancer
Having a family history of breast cancer increases a persons risk of developing the condition themselves.
A females risk almost doubles if they have a first degree relative who has had breast cancer and if they have two first degree relatives who have had it. First degree relatives are parents, siblings, and children and can include males.
The recommend genetic testing for females with a family history of breast, ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer.
Also Check: What Are Signs Of Breast Cancer In Males
Factors That Affect Growth Rate
A number of different studies have demonstrated some of the factors that influence the rate of growth of a breast cancer. These include:
- The type of cancer: Inflammatory breast cancer tends to grow much more rapidly than other types of breast cancer
- Age at diagnosis: Breast cancers in young women tend to grow more rapidly than breast cancers in older women and have a higher tumor grade
- Menopausal state: Breast tumors often grow more rapidly for women who are premenopausal than for those who are postmenopausal, likely due to estrogen in the body.
- Receptor status: Triple negative cancers, in general, grow more rapidly than estrogen receptor-positive tumors. Triple positive tumors also grow more rapidly.
- Estrogen treatment: Women who used hormone replacement therapy after menopause had, in general, more rapid growth rate of breast tumors.
- Ki-67 index: A higher index means a faster doubling time.
- Tumor grade: A higher tumor grade indicates a faster doubling time.
Calculating Risk Based On Tumor Size
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center provides a Breast Cancer Nomogram through which you can predict the likelihood that a breast cancer has spread to axillary lymph nodes based on tumor size .
To complete this estimate, you are asked to agree to the conditions, and understand that it is only an estimate.
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