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What Causes Breast Cancer In Women

Does A Benign Breast Condition Mean That I Have A Higher Risk Of Getting Breast Cancer

What causes breast cancer? A discussion with Amy Lang MD, FACP

Benign breast conditions rarely increase your risk of breast cancer. Some women have biopsies that show a condition called hyperplasia . This condition increases your risk only slightly.

When the biopsy shows hyperplasia and abnormal cells, which is a condition called atypical hyperplasia, your risk of breast cancer increases somewhat more. Atypical hyperplasia occurs in about 5% of benign breast biopsies.

Main Causes Of Breast Cancer Development In Women

Breast Cancer is a form of cancer which develops by the breast cells or tissues, this disease mainly occur in women but can be treated if diagnosed in its early stage of development. A breast cancer that starts in the lobules is referred as lobular carcinoma and a breast cancer, which develops from the ducts, is referred as ductal carcinoma.Breast Cancer may be classified in several grades and each of its type needs a different treatment response. This type of cancer usually starts its development in the inner lining of milk ducts or in the lobules, responsible for milk supply.

Relationships With Friends And Family

It’s not always easy to talk about cancer, either for you or your family and friends. You may sense that some people feel awkward around you or avoid you.

Being open about how you feel and what your family and friends can do to help may put them at ease. However, don’t be afraid to tell them that you need some time to yourself, if that’s what you need.

Want to know more?

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Removal Of The Breast Without Cancer

Certain women with breast cancer have a high risk of developing breast cancer in their other breast . Doctors may suggest that these women have that breast removed before cancer develops. This procedure is called contralateral prophylactic mastectomy. This preventive surgery may be appropriate for women with any of the following:

  • An inherited genetic mutation that increases the risk of developing breast cancer

  • At least two close, usually first-degree relatives who have had breast or ovarian cancer

  • Radiation therapy directed at the chest when women were under 30 years old

  • Lobular carcinoma in situ

In women with lobular carcinoma in situ in one breast, invasive cancer is equally likely to develop in either breast. Thus, the only way to eliminate the risk of breast cancer for these women is to remove both breasts. Some women, particularly those who are at high risk of developing invasive breast cancer, choose this option.

Advantages of contralateral prophylactic mastectomy include the following:

  • Longer survival for women with breast cancer and a genetic mutation that increases risk and possibly for women who are under 50 years old when they are diagnosed with breast cancer

  • For some women, decreased anxiety

Disadvantages of this procedure include the following:

  • Twice the risk of complications

Instead of having a contralateral prophylactic mastectomy, some women may choose to have their doctor monitor the breast closely for cancerfor example with imaging tests.

Family History And Inherited Genes

takes the lives of 6 times as many women as breast cancer ...

Some people have a higher risk of developing breast cancer than the general population because other members of their family have had particular cancers. This is called a family history of cancer.

Having a mother, sister or daughter diagnosed with breast cancer increases the risk of breast cancer. This risk is higher when more close relatives have breast cancer, or if a relative developed breast cancer under the age of 50. But most women who have a close relative with breast cancer will never develop it.

Some people have an increased risk of breast cancer because they have an inherited gene fault. We know about several gene faults that can increase breast cancer risk and there are tests for some of them. Having one of these faulty genes means that you are more likely to get breast cancer than someone who doesnt. But it is not a certainty.

Two of these faulty genes are known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. These are not common. Only about 2 out of every hundred of breast cancers are related to a change in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes.

Ionising radiation includes tests such as x-rays and CT scans and treatment such as radiotherapy.

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Risk Factors For Young Women

All women are at risk of developing breast cancer and the risk greatly increases with age with most cases of breast cancer occurring in women over the age of 50. There are a range of factors that can increase breast cancer risk in young women. The causes of breast cancer in young women can include lifestyle factors and non-lifestyle factors . Young women may have an increased risk of breast cancer due to factors such as:

  • Family history A history of breast cancer among relatives is a strong risk factor for young women. A young womans risk of breast cancer is increased if a close relative, like a mother or aunt, has had breast or ovarian cancer. A young womans risk is further increased by the number of relatives affected and if her relatives were diagnosed with cancer at a young age
  • Genetic susceptibility A high proportion of young women diagnosed with breast cancer have inherited mutations in their BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes .
  • Reproductive and hormonal factors- Early menarche increases the risk of breast cancer, and giving birth to the first child at a late age also increases risk.
  • Alcohol intake Regularly drinking alcohol can increase the risk of breast cancer for women of all ages. The risk of breast cancer rises as the number of drinks regularly consumed increases. Currently, there does not appear to be a safe level of regular alcohol consumption.

Screening For Breast Cancer

Women aged between 50 and 74 are invited to access free screening mammograms every two years via the BreastScreen Australia Program.

Women aged 40-49 and 75 and over are also eligible to receive free mammograms, however they do not receive an invitation to attend.

It is recommended that women with a strong family history of breast or ovarian cancer, aged between 40 and 49 or over 75 discuss options with their GP, or contact BreastScreen Australia on 13 20 50.

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#include A Lot Of Veggies In Your Meals

Munch on cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli and kale, which are good sources of indoles and isothiocyanates that might inhibit the development of breast cancer. A study also showed that women who followed diets like the Mediterranean diet that include nearly six servings of vegetables and fruits a day might reduce the risk of aggressive breast cancer called hormone-receptor-negative by 40 per cent.

Breast Examination By A Health Care Practitioner

Main Causes of Breast Cancer among women

A breast examination may be part of a routine physical examination. However, as with breast self-examination, a doctor’s examination may miss a cancer. If women need or want screening, a more sensitive test, such as mammography, should be done, even if a doctor’s examination did not detect any abnormalities. Many doctors and medical organizations no longer require an annual breast examination by a doctor.

During the examination, a doctor inspects the breasts for irregularities, dimpling, tightened skin, lumps, and a discharge. The doctor feels each breast with a flat hand and checks for enlarged lymph nodes in the armpitthe area most breast cancers invade firstand above the collarbone. Normal lymph nodes cannot be felt through the skin, so those that can be felt are considered enlarged. However, noncancerous conditions can also cause lymph nodes to enlarge. Lymph nodes that can be felt are checked to see if they are abnormal.

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Breast Examination After Treatment For Breast Cancer

After surgery

The incision line may be thick, raised, red and possibly tender for several months after surgery. Remember to examine the entire incision line.

If there is redness in areas away from the scar, contact your physician. It is not unusual to experience brief discomforts and sensations in the breast or nipple area .

At first, you may not know how to interpret what you feel, but soon you will become familiar with what is now normal for you.

After breast reconstruction

Following breast reconstruction, breast examination for the reconstructed breast is done exactly the same way as for the natural breast. If an implant was used for the reconstruction, press firmly inward at the edges of the implant to feel the ribs beneath. If your own tissue was used for the reconstruction, understand that you may feel some numbness and tightness in your breast. In time, some feeling in your breasts may return.

After radiation therapy

After radiation therapy, you may notice some changes in the breast tissue. The breast may look red or sunburned and may become irritated or inflamed. Once therapy is stopped, the redness will disappear and the breast will become less inflamed or irritated. At times, the skin can become more inflamed for a few days after treatment and then gradually improve after a few weeks. The pores in the skin over the breast also may become larger than usual.

What to do

Treatment Of Noninvasive Cancer

For ductal carcinoma in situ, treatment usually consists of one the following:

  • A mastectomy

  • Removal of the tumor and a large amount of surrounding normal tissue with or without radiation therapy

Some women with ductal carcinoma in situ are also given hormone-blocking drugs as part of their treatment.

For lobular carcinoma in situ, treatment includes the following:

  • Classic lobular carcinoma in situ: Surgical removal to check for cancer and, if no cancer is detected, close observation afterward and sometimes tamoxifen, raloxifene, or an aromatase inhibitor to reduce the risk of developing invasive cancer

  • Pleomorphic lobular carcinoma in situ: Surgery to remove the abnormal area and sometimes tamoxifen or raloxifene to reduce the risk of developing invasive cancer

Women with lobular carcinoma in situ are often given tamoxifen, a hormone-blocking drug, for 5 years. It reduces but does not eliminate the risk of developing invasive cancer. Postmenopausal women may be given raloxifene or sometimes an aromatase inhibitor instead.

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How Can I Protect Myself From Breast Cancer

Follow these three steps for early detection:

  • Get a mammogram. The American Cancer Society recommends having a baseline mammogram at age 35, and a screening mammogram every year after age 40. Mammograms are an important part of your health history. Recently, the US Preventive Services Task Force came out with new recommendations regarding when and how often one should have mammograms. These include starting at age 50 and having them every two years. We do not agree with this, but we are in agreement with the American Cancer Society and have not changed our guidelines, which recommend yearly mammograms starting at age 40.
  • Examine your breasts each month after age 20. You will become familiar with the contours and feel of your breasts and will be more alert to changes.
  • Have your breast examined by a healthcare provider at least once every three years after age 20, and every year after age 40. Clinical breast exams can detect lumps that may not be detected by mammogram.

Treatments To Reduce Your Risk

Breast cancer is now officially the world

If you have a greatly increased risk of developing breast cancer, for example, a BRCA gene carrier, treatment might be available to reduce your risk. This applies to a very small minority of women.

Your level of risk is determined by factors such as your age, your family’s medical history, and the results of genetic tests.

You will usually be referred to a specialist genetics service if it’s thought you have a significantly increased risk of breast cancer. Healthcare professionals working at these services might discuss treatment options with you.

The 2 main treatments are surgery to remove the breasts or medication. These are described in more detail below.

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Tess Had Tests To Find Out If She Had The Brca1 And Brca2 Genes It Took A Long Time To Get The

Many women suggested that a number of different factors might be involved in causing breast cancer. Some believed that a possible cause related to hormone use, and discussed the contraceptive pill and Hormone Replacement Therapy.

Women also discussed the possibility of the connection between diet and cancer, and several said theyd made dietary changes following their illness. Some compared the Western lifestyle and diet with non-Western countries. Other women said that they did not know why they should have developed breast cancer, pointing out that they had always led a healthy lifestyle.

Can Cancer Form In Other Parts Of The Breast

Cancers can also form in other parts of the breast, but these types of cancer are less common. These can include:

  • Angiosarcomas. This type of cancer begins in the cells that make up the lining of blood or lymph vessels. These cancers can start in breast tissue or breast skin. They are rare.
  • Inflammatory breast cancer. This type of cancer is rare and different from other types of breast cancer. It is caused by obstructive cancer cells in the skins lymph vessels.
  • Paget disease of the breast, also known as Paget disease of the nipple. This cancer affects the skin of the nipple and areola .
  • Phyllodes tumors. These are rare, and most of these masses are not cancer. However, some are cancerous. These tumors begin in the breasts connective tissue, which is called the stroma.

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Cosmetic Implants And Breast Cancer Survival

A 2013 review found that women with cosmetic breast implants who received a diagnosis of breast cancer also had a higher risk of dying from the disease.

This could be due to the implants masking cancer during screening or because the implants bring about changes in breast tissue.

However, a published in Aesthetic Surgery Journal found that having cosmetic breast implant surgery did not increase the risk of breast cancer.

Scientists need to carry out more research to confirm the link.

There are several different types of breast cancer, including:

  • Ductal carcinoma: This begins in the milk duct and is the most common type.
  • Lobular carcinoma: This starts in the lobules.

Invasive breast cancer occurs when the cancer cells break out from inside the lobules or ducts and invade nearby tissue. This increases the chance of cancer spreading to other parts of the body.

Noninvasive breast cancer develops when the cancer remains inside its place of origin and has not yet spread. However, these cells can sometimes progress to invasive breast cancer.

A doctor often diagnoses breast cancer as the result of routine screening or when a woman approaches her doctor after detecting symptoms.

Several diagnostic tests and procedures help to confirm a diagnosis.

#dairy Meat And Vegetables

Leading Cause of Cancer Deaths for Women

Having fresh foods are always recommended but what happens when you eat frozen and processed foods? Well, you know the answer. According to the studies, an individual consuming red or processed meats have a 25% higher risk of breast cancer than another individual. This is probably because processing causes small amounts of cancer-causing toxins to form in the meat.

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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Breast Cancer

The signs and symptoms of breast cancer include

  • A new lump or thickening in or near the breast or in the armpit
  • A change in the size or shape of the breast
  • A dimple or puckering in the skin of the breast. It may look like the skin of an orange.
  • A nipple turned inward into the breast
  • Nipple discharge other than breast milk. The discharge might happen suddenly, be bloody, or happen in only one breast.
  • Scaly, red, or swollen skin in the nipple area or the breast
  • Pain in any area of the breast

How Much Do Anastrozole And Exemestane Lower The Risk Of Breast Cancer

Studies have shown that both anastrozole and exemestane can lower the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women who are at increased risk of the disease.

In one large study, taking anastrozole for five years lowered the risk of developing estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer by 53 percent. In another study, taking exemestane for three years lowered the risk of developing estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer by 65 percent.

The most common side effects seen with anastrazole and exemestane are joint pains, decreased bone density, and symptoms of menopause .

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 12/31/2018.

References

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Risk Factors You Cant Change

Being a woman. Men can get breast cancer too, but it√Ęs 100 times more likely to affect women.

History of breast cancer. A woman who has had cancer in one breast, such as ductal carcinoma in situ or invasive breast cancer, is three to four times likelier to develop a new breast cancer, unrelated to the first one, in either the other breast or in another part of the same breast. This is different than a recurrence of the previous breast cancer.

Age. Your risk goes up as you age. About 77% of women diagnosed with breast cancer each year are over 50, and more than 40% are 65 and older.

In women ages 40 to 50, there is a 1 in 68 chance of developing breast cancer. From 50 to 60, that goes up to 1 in 42. From 60 to 70, it’s one in 28. And in women 70 and older, it’s 1 in 26.

Direct family history. Having a mother, sister, or daughter with breast cancer puts a woman at higher risk. It’s even greater if this relative developed breast cancer before 50 and had cancer in both breasts.

Having one first-degree relative with breast cancer roughly doubles your risk, and having two first-degree relatives triples your risk. Having a male blood relative with breast cancer will also increase the risk.

Dense breasts. Your breasts are a mix of fatty, fibrous, and glandular tissue. Dense breasts have more glandular and fibrous tissue and less fat. A woman with dense breasts is 1.5 to 2 times more likely to get breast cancer.

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