Surrounded by fatty tissue and connective supports, the breast of women is made up of milk glands and milk ducts. Cancer in breasts caused due to unusual enlargement of cells in any of these breast tissues.
Among all types of cancers found, breast cancer is very common. Like other cancers or heart attacks and strokes, it also occurs at an earlier age. It is found in women rather than men, accounting for less than 1% of all cases. It has been reported that the next cause of death from cancer is Breast cancer in women.
At the earlier stage, not any specific symptoms found. You may notice a lump which may be too small to feel or may cause any unusual changes. It can be diagnosed by mammogram (X-ray of the breast). Then further testing can be done.
In the breast, a new lump or mass found at the earlier stage of cancer. It can be felt by you or by your doctor. The lump is little hard, painless and also has irregular shapes, which may lead to cancer. In some cases, the cancer lump may be, soft, tender and circular. SO if you feel anything unusual in the breast, immediate go for the doctor.
American Cancer Society has proposed a list of symptoms of breast cancer. You may feel following changes:
- breast pain
- redness, scaliness, or thickening of the nipple or breast skin
- skin irritation or dimpling
- swelling of all or part of the breast
- a lump in the underarm area
- nipple pain or the nipple turning inward
- a nipple discharge other than breast milk
Above symptoms may not lead to serious cancerous conditions, like an infection or a cyst. So any usual feelings or changes in the breast must be checked by the doctor.
The cause of breast cancer is yet unknown. But there are many factors which affect the chance of breast cancer in women.
- If age is over 50, it’s more common at this age.
- Hereditary: If anyone in the family has diagnosed by this, like woman’s mother or sister had the disease before menopause.
- the family history of ovarian cancer
- Pregnancy age also matters like women whose first child was born after age 30 or not having children
- menstruation age- Started at an earlier age like under 12 years
- delayed menopause like over 55 years of age, increases the chance of cancer.
Many studies have been shown that above factors can be the causes of cancer in women but these are often statistically quite small. The risk factor increases over 50 years of age. So if there is any concern, must discuss with the doctor.
Treatment for this cancer depends upon the place and size of the lump. Whether it will affect your general health, has spread anywhere else in your body? It is decided by a group of doctors what treatment will best for you.
Depending on many factors, treatment is based on. The team of doctors will suggest the best treatment. Following are the main treatments.
- Cancer type
- Tumour stage, how it is increasing at the time of diagnosis
- Whether or not the tumour expresses ER, PR, and/or HER2
- both biological and chronological health of a woman, her age, overall health
- A woman’s preferences, which must be paramount in the decision process
- Whether she is agreeing to do the treatment
- Among a group of tests on the tumour, gene expression analysis is a must
There are a lot of treatments methods like a group of surgeries, hormone therapy, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and targeted therapy. A newer treatment may be tried, or women may also elect to participate in a clinical trial.