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What Could Cause Breast Cancer

Drugs Used To Lower Breast Cancer Risk

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Preventive medicines can be used to lower the risk of developing breast cancer. These drugs include:

  • Tamoxifen, which blocks estrogen in breast cells, which can be useful in lowering breast cancer risk
  • Raloxifene, which blocks estrogen in breast cells but is only approved for women who have already gone through menopause
  • Aromatase inhibitors, which lowers estrogen levels in women who have already gone through menopause

Does Breast Cancer Affect Women Of All Races Equally

All women, especially as they age, are at some risk for developing breast cancer. The risks for breast cancer in general arent evenly spread among ethnic groups, and the risk varies among ethnic groups for different types of breast cancer. Breast cancer mortality rates in the United States have declined by 40% since 1989, but disparities persist and are widening between non-Hispanic Black women and non-Hispanic white women.

Statistics show that, overall, non-Hispanic white women have a slightly higher chance of developing breast cancer than women of any other race/ethnicity. The incidence rate for non-Hispanic Black women is almost as high.

Non-Hispanic Black women in the U.S. have a 39% higher risk of dying from breast cancer at any age. They are twice as likely to get triple-negative breast cancer as white women. This type of cancer is especially aggressive and difficult to treat. However, it’s really among women with hormone positive disease where Black women have worse clinical outcomes despite comparable systemic therapy. Non-Hispanic Black women are less likely to receive standard treatments. Additionally, there is increasing data on discontinuation of adjuvant hormonal therapy by those who are poor and underinsured.

In women under the age of 45, breast cancer is found more often in non-Hispanic Black women than in non-Hispanic white women.

Study Design And Sample

This cross-sectional, observational study was done in a tertiary care hospital in Kerala, with a comprehensive cancer care unit including pain and palliative care and psycho-oncology units. This study was conducted from August 2014 to August 2016. The study population included patients aged above 18 years who were diagnosed with breast cancer and are undergoing surgery or chemotherapy or radiotherapy or a combination of therapies. Patients with a family history of mood disorder or other psychiatric disorder were included in this study.

Patients with current psychiatric disorders or cognitive deficits and with hearing or visual impairments were excluded from the study. The sample size was calculated with a prevalence of 22% reported by Hassan et al. in a study conducted among Malaysian breast cancer patients. The sample size was estimated to be 270 with 95% confidence and 20% allowable error. The patients were recruited through convenience sampling.

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Does Deodorant Cause Breast Cancer

You many have heard that deodorants and antiperspirants containing aluminum can cause breast cancer. However, theres no strong evidence showing this to be true.

So why do some people believe this? It has to do with how deodorants work. When aluminum is used as the active ingredient in an antiperspirant or deodorant, it forms a temporary plug in the sweat duct to prevent sweat from coming to your skins surface.

The theory is that if the aluminum builds up in your body, it can cause estrogen-like hormonal changes that lead to breast cancer. But there hasnt been a lot of research to prove or disprove a relationship between deodorant and breast cancer. If youre concerned, talk to your doctor or look for a deodorant thats aluminum-free.

Recalls of spray deodorants with benzene contaminants

While the active ingredients in deodorant are generally considered safe, some spray antiperspirants could include benzene, which is not a normal ingredient in aerosol antiperspirant its a contaminant that has been found in the propellant that allows you to spray the deodorant out of the can.

Theres no proof that benzene causes breast cancer, but high levels of benzene exposure can lead to other cancers such as leukemia and blood cancer of the bone marrow.

Taking Charge: Who Gets Breast Cancer

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There are no rules about who gets this disease. The two most significant risk factors are being a woman, and increasing age. However, there are other factors that may increase your risk, and some that may lower it.

The development of breast cancer may be influenced by factors that affect the levels of female hormones that circulate in your body throughout life. These factors include the age when you began your menstrual period, the number of times you have been pregnant, your age at first pregnancy, whether you have breastfed your children, and your level of physical activity.

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History Of Breast Cancer Or Breast Lumps

A person who has had breast cancer is more likely to develop it again than a person with no history of the disease.

Having some types of noncancerous breast lumps increases the risk of developing the cancer later on. Examples include atypical ductal hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma in situ.

People with a history of breast, ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer should ask their doctors about genetic testing.

What Do We Know About The Cause Of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer originates in breast tissue. Its caused by changes, or mutations, in breast cell DNA. These mutations cause cells to grow abnormally and divide quicker than healthy cells do. The abnormal cells accumulate, forming a malignant breast mass, also known as a lump.

Your immune system may be able to successfully fight some abnormal cells. but the ones that continue to grow may spread, or metastasize, throughout the breast to the lymph nodes or other parts of the body.

When breast cancer spreads, the malignant tumors it causes in other places are still referred to as breast cancer.

What exactly triggers DNA changes in breast cells isnt clear. Two people can have the same or similar risk factors, but only one might develop breast cancer.

55 years old .

But your genetics and external factors, like smoking, also have an impact. Genetic risk factors cant be changed, but lifestyle choices that put you at higher risk can be altered.

Its also likely that for many people, multiple risk factors both genetic and environmental have an impact when several are present.

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Bioassay Of Clampede2 On Uterine Weight

Our various strategies to examine the ER-independent effects of E2 critically depended on complete blockade of any residual ER activity resulting from a truncated ER or from low levels of ER. Measurement of uterine weight provided a robust bioassay of E2 to determine whether complete blockade was achieved. We measured uterine weight after at least 2 months of E2 exposure under each experimental condition . In the ERKO castrate animals, E2 stimulated uterine weight to 18% of that observed in ER+/+/Wnt-1 animals, an effect resulting from a biologic effect of the truncated 56KD receptor . Fulvestrant completely blocked the residual ER responsiveness in the ERKO/Wnt-1 animals. Uterine weight fell to 7 ± 1 mg in the animals receiving 240 pg/ml E2 plus fulvestrant, a uterine weight similar to that observed in castrate animals . In aggregate, these data demonstrated that fulvestrant was capable of completely abrogating the effects of residual ER activity in ERKO animals.

Uterine wet weights in ER+/Wnt-1 and ERKO/Wnt-1 animals. Shown are mean weights of the uterus under various conditions. Data from ER-animals were pooled from different experiments . 17-E2/ovx: castrate animals receiving 17-OH-E2 to produce plasma levels of 240 pg/ml . Statistical analysis: ER+ groups: compared to intact , compared to ovx , compared to ovx + E2 ERKO groups: compared to intact , compared to ovx , compared to ovx + E2 with all p-values less than 0.001.

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What Do Scientists Actually Know About The Cause Of Breast Cancer

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Cancer grows when a cells DNA is damaged, but why or how that DNA becomes damaged is still unknown. It could be genetic or environmental, or in most cases, a combination of the two. But most patients will never know exactly what caused their cancer. However, there are certain established risk factors that are associated with breast cancer.

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Does Abortion Affect Hormones During Pregnancy

Concern about a possible link between abortion and breast cancer has been raised because abortion is thought to interrupt the normal cycle of hormones during pregnancy. Some believe that this interruption might increase a womans risk of developing breast cancer.

There are different types of abortion:

  • Spontaneous abortion, which most people refer to as a miscarriage, is the loss of a fetus before 5 months into the pregnancy. It is often caused by problems with the fetus or with the maternal environment in which it is growing.
  • Stillborn birth is usually considered to be the death of a fetus after 5 months gestation while still in the uterus .
  • Induced abortion is a medical procedure done to end a pregnancy. It is what most people think of when they hear abortion.

All of these have been studied to see what effect they may have on a womans risk of developing breast cancer later in life.

How Is Breast Cancer Diagnosed

During your regular physical examination, your doctor will take a thorough personal and family medical history. He or she will also perform and/or order one or more of the following:

  • Breast examination: During the breast exam, the doctor will carefully feel the lump and the tissue around it. Breast cancer usually feels different than benign lumps.
  • Digital mammography: An X-ray test of the breast can give important information about a breast lump. This is an X-ray image of the breast and is digitally recorded into a computer rather than on a film. This is generally the standard of care .
  • Ultrasonography: This test uses sound waves to detect the character of a breast lump whether it is a fluid-filled cyst or a solid mass . This may be performed along with the mammogram.

Based on the results of these tests, your doctor may or may not request a biopsy to get a sample of the breast mass cells or tissue. Biopsies are performed using surgery or needles.

After the sample is removed, it is sent to a lab for testing. A pathologist a doctor who specializes in diagnosing abnormal tissue changes views the sample under a microscope and looks for abnormal cell shapes or growth patterns. When cancer is present, the pathologist can tell what kind of cancer it is and whether it has spread beyond the ducts or lobules .

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What Are The Most Common Breast Cancer Risk Factors

A lot of times, women think family history is the biggest risk factor for breast cancer, says Dr. Rae Ann Williams, who leads the Internal Medicine Department at HealthPartners. But the data tells us that most women who are diagnosed with breast cancer dont have any family history of the disease.

In fact, more than 80% of breast cancer is found in women without a family history of the disease. So, even if your mother and sister are free from breast cancer, its still important to get regular screenings.

Here are the top risk factors for breast cancer:

Understanding Your Risk Of Breast Cancer

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Several breast cancer risk assessment tools have been developed to help a woman estimate her chance of developing breast cancer. The best studied is the Gail model, which is available on the National Cancer Institutes website at After you enter some personal and family information, including race/ethnicity, the tool provides you with a 5-year and lifetime estimate of the risk of developing invasive breast cancer. Because it only asks for information about breast cancer in first-degree family members and does not include their ages at diagnosis, the tool works best at estimating risk in women without a strong inherited breast cancer risk. For some women, other ways of determining the risk of breast cancer may work better. For example, women with a strong family history of breast cancer risk should consider talking to a genetic counselor.

It is important to talk with your doctor about how to estimate your personal risk of breast cancer and to discuss risk-reducing or prevention options .

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Pregnancy And Breast Cancer Risk

Women who have a full-term pregnancy before age 20 have a lower risk of breast cancer than women who never have a full-term pregnancy or who have their first full-term pregnancy after the age of 30 or 35. The risk of breast cancer also goes down as the number of full-term pregnancies goes up. Still, a full-term pregnancy after age 30 is linked to a higher risk of breast cancer than never giving birth.

The reasons for these changes in risk are not entirely clear. We do know that hormone levels typically change a lot during pregnancy. Some of these changes cause cells in the breast to mature, to help prepare to produce milk for breastfeeding. This might affect the tendency for these cells to become cancerous. Pregnancy also decreases a womans total number of menstrual cycles, which also seems to affect breast cancer risk. Still, the reason for the differences in breast cancer risk based on the womans age during her first full-term pregnancy is not known.

How Does Psychological Stress Affect People Who Have Cancer

People who have cancer may find the physical, emotional, and social effects of the disease to be stressful. Those who attempt to manage their stress with risky behaviors such as smoking or drinking alcohol or who become more sedentary may have a poorer quality of life after cancer treatment. In contrast, people who are able to use effective coping strategies to deal with stress, such as relaxation and stress management techniques, have been shown to have lower levels of depression, anxiety, and symptoms related to the cancer and its treatment. However, there is no evidence that successful management of psychological stress improves cancer survival.

Evidence from experimental studies does suggest that psychological stress can affect a tumors ability to grow and spread. For example, some studies have shown that when mice bearing human tumors were kept confined or isolated from other miceconditions that increase stresstheir tumors were more likely to grow and spread . In one set of experiments, tumors transplanted into the mammary fat pads of mice had much higher rates of spread to the lungs and lymph nodes if the mice were chronically stressed than if the mice were not stressed. Studies in mice and in human cancer cells grown in the laboratory have found that the stress hormone norepinephrine, part of the bodys fight-or-flight response system, may promote angiogenesis and metastasis.

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What Causes Breast Cancer

We dont know what causes each case of breast cancer. But we do know many of the risk factors for these cancers . For example, lifestyle-related risk factors, such as what you eat and how much you exercise, can increase your chance of developing breast cancer, but its not yet known exactly how some of these risk factors cause normal cells to become cancer. Hormones also seem to play a role in many cases of breast cancer, but just how this happens is not fully understood.

We do know that normal breast cells can become cancer because of changes or mutations in genes. But only about 1 in 10 breast cancers are linked with known abnormal genes that are passed on from parents . Many genes have not yet been discovered, so women with a family history of breast cancer might have inherited an abnormal gene that doesn’t show on a genetic test. Most breast cancers develop from acquired gene changes that have not yet been identified.

Can Nipple Piercing Cause Breast Cancer

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Nipple piercings have become a popular trend. But theres currently no evidence that having pierced nipples increases the likelihood of developing breast cancer.

However, the area pierced is at risk of infection, at the time of the piercing and as long as you wear the jewellery, possibly even longer.

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Your Race And Ethnicity

White and Black women have the highest risk of developing breast cancer in their lifetime. Asian/Pacific Islander and Hispanic/Latina womens breast cancer rates fall in between two major groupings while American Indian and Alaska Native women are on the lowest end of risk.

While white women are more likely to develop breast cancer than Black women overall, they tend to be diagnosed at an older age . Black women have the highest breast cancer rates among women under age 40. Black women make up a higher percentage of triple-negative breast cancer cases.

What to do: If your race or ethnicity places you at higher risk, make sure you follow all screening recommendations to improve your chances of catching cancer early.

Symptoms For Specific Types Of Cancer

Each form of breast cancer develops in a different part of the breast and can affect different types of tissue.

Since many breast cancers cause no symptoms, people should attend regular screenings. This can help identify the disease in its early stages.

Below, we outline the types of breast cancer and their symptoms.

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Does Progesterone Cause Breast Cancer

Taking hormonal replacement therapy medications that combine progesterone and estrogen for menopause symptoms increases your chance of breast cancer by about 75% while youre on the medication. But once you stop taking the medication, your risks go down.

Its safest not to use progesterone for menopause. But if you need relief from your symptoms, there are ways to reduce the risks of breast cancer from HRT. These options may include using estrogen-only therapy or reducing how long you take medicines that include progesterone.

If you are going through menopause, talk to your doctor about how you can manage your symptoms while limiting your risks of breast cancer.


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