Breast Cancer refers to the type of cancer that is characterized by the uncontrolled progression of abnormal cells located in the tissues of the breast. It is the second prevalent form of cancer affecting women with an incidence rate of one in every eight women.
Breast cancer comes in several form, the more common types are ductal carcinoma, which makes up approximately eighty five to ninety percent of breast cancers, and lobular carcinoma, found in about eight percent of breast cancer patients. Ductal carcinoma starts from the ducts that carry milk from the lobules to the nipple. When the cancer starts at the milk producing lobules, it is called lobular carcinoma.
There has yet to be a scientific explanation on how breast cells become abnormal and ultimately malignant. However, breast cancer is attributed to a combination of risk factors that a woman may inherit or acquire.
Some breast cancer risk factors are genetic in nature. It is widely accepted that women who have one or more relatives afflicted with breast cancer have a higher risk of having breast cancer incidence themselves. Studies show that some families have defects in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene and this account to about ten percent of breast cancer cases.
Hormonal risk factors are also involved in the formation of breast cancer. The female hormones, estrogen and Dr Vikas Goswami progesterone, assists in the development and division of breast cancer cells. Women may increase their risk for breast cancer if they had hormonal replacement therapy during their menopausal stages.
Age and gender plays a key role in the development of cancerous cells in the breast. Women are thought to have a hundred percent likelihood of growing breast cancer than men especially those who area above the age of fifty.
A person’s overall health condition also factors in as a risk. Women who are less active and with less exercise have higher cancer development rate than those who have physically active. It is also well established that alcohol consumption and weight gain contributes to the incidence certain illnesses, including breast cancer.
Signs and Symptoms of Breast Cancer
Here are some signs that a woman may have breast cancer.
1. A painless lump growing in the breast area or armpit.
2. Unusual change in size and shape of the breast.
3. The nipple may produce a pus-like or clear discharge.
4. The color and texture of the skin, particularly the areola.
Women should immediately report occurrence of one or a combination of these symptoms to their physician so that early detection can be accomplished. The stage in which breast cancer is diagnosed largely identifies the treatment method needed and the survival rate that a patient may expect. For those who have detected the cancer growth at very early stages, the five year survival rate goes to as high as a hundred percent.