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Pictures Of Male Breast Cancer

Questions To Ask Your Doctor

How to Check for the Signs of Male Breast Cancer | Lorraine
  • What treatments do I need?
  • How will cancer treatment affect my daily life?
  • Should I participate in clinical trials?
  • What is the outlook of my breast cancer?
  • If Im at high risk of breast cancer, should I see a genetic counselor?
  • What is the chance of my cancer returning, and what are the signs or symptoms?

Changes In The Size And Shape Of The Breast

Its not uncommon for breasts to swell, and you may notice a change in size around the time of your menstrual cycle.

Swelling can also cause breast tenderness, and it may be slightly uncomfortable to wear a bra or lie down on your stomach. This is perfectly normal and rarely indicative of breast cancer.

But while your breasts may undergo certain changes at different times of the month, you shouldnt overlook some changes. If you notice your breasts swelling at times other than your menstrual cycle, or if only one breast is swollen, talk to your doctor.

In cases of normal swelling, both breasts remain symmetrical. That means one wont suddenly be larger or more swollen than the other.

Treating Breast Cancer In Men

Treatment for breast cancer in men largely depends on how far the cancer has spread.

Most hospitals use multidisciplinary teams to treat men with breast cancer. These are teams of specialists who work together to make decisions about the best way to proceed with your treatment.

Before visiting hospital to discuss your treatment options, you may find it useful to write a list of questions you’d like to ask the specialist. For example, you could ask about the advantages and disadvantages of particular treatments.

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What Can I Do To Reduce My Risk

If several members of your family have had breast or ovarian cancer, or one of your family members has a known BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, share this information with your doctor. Your doctor may refer you for genetic counseling. In men, mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes can increase the risk of breast cancer, high-grade prostate cancer, and pancreatic cancer.

If genetic testing shows that you have a BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation, your doctor will explain what you should do to find cancer early, if you get it.

All men can lower their risk by keeping a healthy weight and exercising regularly.

As a neurosurgeon, Don knew everything in life and in surgery is all risk versus benefit. After discovering his family history of breast cancer, he took responsibility for his own health by getting tested and later having an elective mastectomy.

Causes Of Breast Cancer In Men

What Are The Symptoms Of Breast Cancer For Male

The exact cause of breast cancer in men is not known, but there are some things that increase your risk of getting it.

These include:

  • genes and family history inheriting faulty versions of genes called BRCA1 or BRCA2 increases your risk of breast cancer
  • conditions that can increase the level of oestrogen in the body including obesity, Klinefelter syndrome and scarring of the liver
  • previous radiotherapy to the chest area

It’s not certain that you can do anything to reduce your risk, but eating a balanced diet, losing weight if you’re overweight and not drinking too much alcohol may help.

Page last reviewed: 18 March 2020 Next review due: 18 March 2023

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If Cancer Is Found Tests Are Done To Study The Cancer Cells

  • How quickly the cancer may grow.
  • How likely it is that the cancer will spread through the body.
  • How well certain treatments might work.
  • How likely the cancer is to recur .

Tests include the following:

Ductal Carcinoma In Situ

Ductal carcinoma in situ refers to an area of abnormal cells on one milk duct.

When a person receives this diagnosis, the cells have not invaded the surrounding breast tissue. However, having ductal carcinoma in situ can increase the risk of developing invasive breast cancer later.

This condition generally does not cause symptoms. Doctors find through mammography. Rarely, a person may notice a lump in the breast or some discharge from the nipple.

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How Is Male Breast Cancer Diagnosed

Your healthcare provider will ask about your symptoms and examine your breast tissue, paying close attention to any lumps or abnormalities. Your provider may take a sample of your blood and send it to a lab.

To look for cancer cells in breast tissue, your provider may do a biopsy. Using a thin needle, your provider removes a sample of the breast tissue and sends it to a lab. The lab tests the tissue for cancer cells.

To see pictures of your breast tissue, your provider may order imaging studies. These include:

  • Mammogram: A mammogram is an X-ray of breast tissue.
  • Ultrasound: An ultrasound uses sound waves to see images of soft tissues.
  • MRI: An MRI produces images of breast tissue using a high-powered magnet and radio waves.

What Are The Risk Factors

Male Breast Cancer Patient Shares His Story

Several factors can increase a mans chance of getting breast cancer. Having risk factors does not mean you will get breast cancer.

  • Getting older. The risk for breast cancer increases with age. Most breast cancers are found after age 50.
  • Genetic mutations. Inherited changes in certain genes, such as BRCA1 and BRCA2, increase breast cancer risk.
  • Family history of breast cancer. A mans risk for breast cancer is higher if a close family member has had breast cancer.
  • Radiation therapy treatment. Men who had radiation therapy to the chest have a higher risk of getting breast cancer.
  • Hormone therapy treatment. Drugs containing estrogen , which were used to treat prostate cancer in the past, increase mens breast cancer risk.
  • Klinefelter syndrome.Klinefelter syndrome is a rare genetic condition in which a male has an extra X chromosome. This can lead to the body making higher levels of estrogen and lower levels of androgens .
  • Certain conditions that affect the testicles. Injury to, swelling in, or surgery to remove the testicles can increase breast cancer risk.
  • Liver disease. Cirrhosis of the liver can lower androgen levels and raise estrogen levels in men, increasing the risk of breast cancer.
  • Overweight and obesity. Older men who are overweight or have obesity have a higher risk of getting breast cancer than men at a normal weight.

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About Breast Cancer In Men

Breast cancer is often thought of as a condition that only affects women, but men can also develop it.

It’s much less common in men than women.

The cancer develops in the small amount of breast tissue men have behind their nipples. The most common symptom is a hard, painless lump in one of the breasts.

However, the vast majority of breast lumps are caused by a condition called gynaecomastia. This is a common non-cancerous condition where male breast tissue becomes enlarged.

Breast cancer in men can also cause nipple problems, such as the nipple turning in on itself or nipple discharge.

Read more about preventing cancer

Can I Prevent Male Breast Cancer

You may not be able to prevent breast cancer. But you can lower your risk of developing the disease by maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding excess alcohol and getting plenty of exercise.

If you have a family history of breast cancer, talk to your doctor. You may consider genetic testing to see if you have the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genetic mutation. These gene changes increase your risk of breast cancer. People with these gene changes should visit their healthcare provider regularly and get frequent cancer screenings.

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Men With Breast Cancer Usually Have Lumps That Can Be Felt

Lumps and other signs may be caused by male breast cancer or by other conditions. Check with your doctor if you have any of the following:

  • A lump or thickening in or near the breast or in the underarm area.
  • A change in the size or shape of the breast.
  • A dimple or puckering in the skin of the breast.
  • A nipple turned inward into the breast.
  • Fluid from the nipple, especially if it’s bloody.
  • Scaly, red, or swollen skin on the breast, nipple, or areola .
  • Dimples in the breast that look like the skin of an orange, called peau dorange.

Living With Male Breast Cancer

Male Breast Cancer

The process to diagnose and treat cancer can be long and frustrating. Most treatments are invasive and cause side effects. Medicines help counter these, but effects can be long lasting. You likely will need to make changes to your lifestyle.

After treatment, your cancer may subside. Remission can be brief or permanent. Cancer survivors usually require ongoing care. This can include testing and treatment to monitor and manage their health.

Living with cancer is emotional. You might consider joining a support group. Your doctor also might suggest rehabilitation to help with physical and life changes.

Having a male family member with breast cancer is a trigger for genetic testing and counseling. After receiving your diagnosis, a genetic counselor can help you determine if members of your family should be tested for mutations in the BRCA gene. Abnormalities in the BRCA gene cause forms of breast and ovarian cancer.

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Genetics And Family History

A genetic mutation is a permanent alteration in the DNA sequence that makes up a gene. The result is that one or more of the body’s processes may not work in the way they should.

There are a number of genetic mutations known to increase your risk of developing breast cancer. The most significant mutation identified is known as the BRCA2 mutation.

There’s also evidence that breast cancer can run in families, especially in men who have a first-degree relative who has developed breast cancer, such as a mother or sister.

Routine testing for the faulty genes that cause breast cancer in men isn’t usually carried out on the NHS, unless specifically requested by a specialist. However, some private clinics may offer gene testing. Tests can be expensive, with prices ranging from around £2,000 to £3,000.

What Causes Male Breast Cancer

Anyone can get breast cancer. Overall health, family history and genetic factors increase the risk of developing the disease. Risk factors of male breast cancer include:

  • Age: Men over 60 are more likely to develop breast cancer.
  • Overall health: Men with obesity may have gynecomastia . Gynecomastia increases the risk of developing breast cancer.
  • Estrogen levels: Certain drugs that contain estrogen cause estrogen levels to rise. Cirrhosis can also increase estrogen levels. A genetic disorder called Klinefelter syndrome increases the risk of several health issues, including breast cancer.
  • Family history: Men who have a first-degree relative with breast cancer have a higher chance of the disease.
  • Genes: Genetic mutations increase the risk of developing breast cancer. These include changes in the BRCA gene . Mutations in these genes also increase the risk of pancreatic cancer and prostate cancer.
  • Radiation therapy: Men who had radiation therapy in the chest or torso have a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
  • Testicular issues: People who have had surgery to remove their testicles have a higher risk of breast cancer. Testicle injuries also increase the risk.

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Risk Factors For Male Breast Cancer

Several factors are known to increase the risk that a man will develop breast cancer. But its important to know that many men who develop breast cancer do not have any of these risk factors.

Factors that can increase a mans breast cancer risk include:

The risk of male breast cancer increases as you age. The average age of men diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States is about 67. But breast cancer can occur in young men, too.

A mans risk for breast cancer is higher if any of his close relatives have had breast cancer, and especially if any male relatives have had the disease.

Men who inherit certain genetic mutations from their mothers or fathers have a higher risk of developing breast cancer. A man who inherits a BRCA1 mutation has about a 1% risk of developing breast cancer in his lifetime, compared to a risk of 0.1% for the average man. A man who inherits a BRCA2 mutation has a 7% to 8% risk.

Mutations in the ATM, CHEK2, PALB2, and other genes are also linked to breast cancer in men, but more research is needed to understand those risks.

You may think of testosterone as a male hormone and estrogen as a female hormone. The truth is, both men and women have different levels of testosterone and estrogen in their bodies. Men have less estrogen than women, but all men have some estrogen in their bodies.

Higher levels of estrogen can increase the risk of male breast cancer. Men can have high estrogen levels as a result of:

Symptoms Of Breast Cancer In Men

Male breast cancer – what you should know

The most common symptom for men with breast cancer include:

  • lump in the breast that is nearly always painless
  • oozing from the nipple that may be blood stained
  • a nipple that is pulled into the breast
  • swelling of the breast
  • a sore in the skin of the breast
  • lump or swelling under the arm
  • a rash on or around the nipple

If you have any of these symptoms it is important to go to your GP straight away. Finding a cancer early gives the best chance of successful treatment.

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What Are The Symptoms

The most common symptoms of breast cancer in men are

  • A lump or swelling in the breast.
  • Redness or flaky skin in the breast.
  • Irritation or dimpling of breast skin.
  • Nipple discharge.
  • Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area.

These symptoms can happen with other conditions that are not cancer. If you have any symptoms or changes, see your doctor right away.

Diagnosis Of Male Breast Cancer

Doctors use a number of different diagnostic tests to find out whether or not breast cancer is present and, if so, whether it has spread outside the breast. Diagnostic tests are also used to gather more information about the cancer to guide decisions about treatment.

If you have possible symptoms of male breast cancer, your doctor may recommend some combination of the following diagnostic tests:

Each time your doctors remove tissue from your breast or lymph nodes whether as part of the initial biopsy or during surgery for breast cancer they will send it to a lab for testing. The tests will tell whether or not cancer is present and, if so, will provide information about the characteristics of the cancer. All of the test results together make up your pathology report. Your doctors will discuss the results in your pathology report with you. The information in the report will help you and your doctors decide which treatments are best for you.

In most cases, you can expect the pathology report to classify the breast cancer as one of the following:

Learn more about the information that may be in your pathology report.

If you are a man who has been diagnosed with breast cancer, you and your medical team will develop a treatment plan based on the characteristics of the cancer and other factors.

Learn more about the Treatment of Male Breast Cancer.

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Pay Attention To Breast Changes

A lot of men aren’t aware that breast cancer can be a problem for them. As a result, men are less likely to speak up about breast changes and often get diagnosed at a more advanced stage of breast cancer than women. Always see your doctor if you notice anything unusual in the area of your breast.

Where Breast Cancer Starts

Pin on Male Breast Cancer

Breast cancers can start from different parts of the breast. Most breast cancers begin in the ducts that carry milk to the nipple . Some start in the glands that make breast milk . Men have these ducts and glands, too, even though they aren’t normally functional. There are also types of breast cancer that start in other types of breast cells, but these are less common.

A small number of cancers start in other tissues in the breast. These cancers are called sarcomas and lymphomas and are not really thought of as breast cancers.

Although many types of breast cancer can cause a lump in the breast, not all do. There are other symptoms of breast cancer you should watch for and report to a health care provider.

Its also important to understand that most breast lumps are benign and not cancer . Benign breast tumors are abnormal growths, but they do not spread outside of the breast and they are not life threatening. Any breast lump or change needs to be checked by a health care provider to determine whether it is benign or malignant and whether it might impact your future cancer risk.

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