Breast cancer is women's most common invasive cancer and the second leading cause of death from cancer in women after lung cancer.
Symptom awareness and screening need are important ways to reduce risk. Breast cancer can also affect men in rare cases, but this article will focus on women's breast cancer.
Breast cancer's first symptoms usually appear as an area of thickened tissue in the breast or as a lump in the breast or an armpit.
Other symptoms include:
Amphitis or breast pain which does not change with the monthly cycle
Pitting or redness of the breast's muscle, close to the orange coating
A rash on or around the nipples
discharge from a nipple, possibly containing blood
a sunken or inverted nipple
A change in breast size or shape
Peeling, flaking or skin scaling of the breast or nipple
Most breast lumps are not cancerous. However, if women notice a lump on the breast, they should visit a doctor for an examination.
• A doctor stages Cancer(Tumor)
according to the size of the tumor and whether it has spread to lymph nodes or other parts of the body.
• There are different ways of staging breast tumor. One way is from stage 0–4, at each numbered stage, with subdivided categories.
• Descriptions of the four main stages are listed below, although the cancer's specific substage may also depend on other specific tumor characteristics, such as HER2 receptor status.
0 Stage: Known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), the cells are limited to within the ducts and have not invaded surrounding tissues.
1 Stage: At this stage, the tumor measures up to 2 centimeters (cm) across. No lymph nodes have been affected, or small groups of Cancer(Tumor)
cells are in the lymph nodes.
2 Stage: The tumor is 2 cm across, and it has started to spread to nearby nodes, or is 2–5 cm across and has not spread to the lymph nodes.
3 Stage: The tumor is up to 5 cm across, and it has spread to several lymph nodes or the tumor is larger than 5 cm and has spread to a few lymph nodes.
4 Stage: The Cancer(Tumor)
has spread to distant organs, most often the bones, liver, brain, or lungs.
.A woman's breast after puberty is made up of fat, connective tissue, and thousands of lobules. These are tiny glands that produce milk for breastfeeding. After puberty, the breast of a woman is made up of fat, connective tissue, and thousands of lobules.
•Cancer causes the cells to multiply uncontrollably. They don't die in their life cycle at the normal stage. This excessive cell growth causes cancer because the tumor uses nutrients and energy and deprives the cells around it.
•In the inner lining of milk ducts or the lobules that supply them with milk, breast tumor usually begins. It can spread from there to other parts of the body.
The exact cause of breast cancer remains unclear, but it is more likely due to some risk factors. It is possible to prevent some of these risk factors.
Women with certain mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes are more likely to develop breast cancer, ovarian cancer, or both. People inherit these genes from their parents.
TP53 gene mutations also have ties to increased risk of breast tumor.
If a close relative has or has had breast cancer, the risk that a person will develop breast tumor will increase.
Current guidelines recommend that people in the following groups seek genetic testing:
• those with a family history of breast, ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer
• those in whose ancestry there is a history of breast tumor related to BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations, for example, people with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry
The risk of breast cancer increases with age. Over the next decade, at 20 years, the chance of developing breast cancer is 0.06%. This figure rises to 3.84 percent by the age of 70 years.
3. A history of breast cancer or lumps
Women who have had breast cancer before are more likely to have it again than those who do not have the disease history.
Finding these types of non-cancerous breast lump increases the chance that tumor will occur later. Examples include in situ atypical hyperplasia of the duct or lobular carcinoma.
Individuals with a history of breast, ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer should ask their doctors about genetic testing.
4. Estrogen exposure and breastfeeding
Extended exposure to estrogen appears to increase the risk of breast cancer.
This could be due to a person starting their periods earlier or entering menopause at a later than average age. Between these times, estrogen levels are higher.
Breastfeeding seems to reduce the likelihood of developing breast cancer, especially for over 1 year. This is possibly due to the drop in estrogen exposure that follows pregnancy and breastfeeding.
5. Body weight
Women who become overweight or develop obesity after menopause may also be more likely to develop breast cancer, possibly because of increased levels of estrogen. High sugar intake may also be a factor.
6. Alcohol consumption
A higher rate of regular consumption of alcohol seems to play a role in the development of breast cancer.
According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), studies have consistently found that women who consume alcohol have a higher risk of breast cancer than those who do not. Those who drink moderate to heavy levels of alcohol have a higher risk than light drinkers.
7. Radiation exposure
Undergoing radiation treatment for another Cancer(Tumor)
can increase the risk that breast cancer will develop later in life.
8. Hormone treatments
According to the NCI, studies have shown that oral contraceptives may slightly increase the risk of breast cancer
According to the ACS, studies have found that hormone replacement therapy (HRT), specifically estrogen-progesterone therapy (EPT), is related to an increased risk of breast cancer.
Different types of breast cancer, including:
Ductal carcinoma: The most common type of carcinoma starts in the milk duct.
Lobular carcinoma: This starts in the lobules.
Invasive breast cancer occurs when the cells in the lobules or ducts break out and invade nearby tissue. This increases the possibility of spreading cancer to other parts of the body.
Non-invasive breast cancer occurs when the Cancer(Tumor)
persists and has not yet spread within its place of origin. Often, however, these cells can progress to invasive breast cancer.
As a result of routine screening or when a woman approaches her doctor after symptoms have been detected, a doctor often diagnoses breast cancer. Several diagnostic tests and procedures help to confirm a diagnosis.
The doctor will check the breasts for lumps and other symptoms.
During the examination, the person may need to sit or stand with their arms in different positions, such as above their head or by their sides.
Several tests can help detect breast cancer.
Mammogram: This is an X-ray type commonly used by doctors during an initial screening for breast cancer. It creates images that can help a doctor detect abnormalities or lumps.
A doctor will usually follow with further testing any suspicious results. Mammography, however, often reveals a suspicious region that does not turn out to be cancer.
Ultrasound: This scan uses sound waves to help a doctor differentiate between a solid mass and a fluid-filled cyst.
MRI: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) combines different images of the breast to help a doctor identify cancer or other abnormalities. A doctor may recommend an MRI as a follow-up to a mammogram or ultrasound. Doctors sometimes use them as a screening tool for those at higher risk of breast cancer.
The doctor extracts a tissue sample in a biopsy and sends it to be analyzed in the laboratory.
This shows whether the cells are cancerous. If they are, a biopsy indicates which type of cancer has developed, including whether or not the cancer is hormone sensitive.
Diagnosis also involves staging the cancer to establish:
The size of a Cancer(Tumor)
How far it has spread
Whether it is invasive or noninvasive
Staging provides a picture of the chances of recovery of a person and their ideal treatment course.
Treatment will depend on several factors, including:
The type and stage of the cancer
The person's sensitivity to hormones
The age, overall health, and preferences of the individual
The main treatment options include:
Biological therapy, or targeted drug therapy
Factors affecting the type of treatment a person has will include the stage of the cancer, other medical conditions, and their individual preference.