What is Breast Cancer?Breast cancer is a group of abnormal cells growing in an uncontrolled way, starting in the breast tissue. These cells are called a tumor. Over time these cells can invade other parts of the body, interrupting normal body function, and can lead to death. Nearly all cases of breast cancer occur in women, although men can get the disease as well It is the second most common form of cancer among women (after skin cancer). Statistics indicate that tumors diagnosed in younger women may be more aggressive and less responsive to treatment, making early detection key.
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According to American Cancer Society:
- Besides skin cancers, breast cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed among American women. It accounts for nearly 1 in 3 cases of cancers.
- Only lung cancer accounts for more cancer deaths among American women.
- Today, about 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer in their lifetime.
- A woman in the United States is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes.
- The chance that a breast cancer patient will be alive ﬁve years after diagnosis is lower in women under 40. Statistics indicate that tumors diagnosed in younger women may be more aggressive and less responsive to treatment, making early detection key.
According to The National Cancer Institute:Approximately 2.6 million American women with a history of breast cancer were alive in January, 2008.Men can get Breast Cancer too! Although it usually occurs among women, men have breast tissue and can develop breast cancer. About 2,190 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected among men in 2012; approximately 410 men will die from breast cancer in 2012. About 12% of women born today will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetimes. This is equivalent to 1 in 8 women.
According to THE U.S. CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION (CDC):
- White women have the highest incidence rate for breast cancer (about 125 women out of every 100,000), followed Black women, then Hispanic women, then Asian/Paciﬁc Islander women, and then American Indian/Alaska Native women.
- Death rates from breast cancer tell a different story. Black women have the highest death rates, followed by White women, then Hispanic women, then American Indian/Alaska Native women, and then Asian/Paciﬁc Islander women.
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StagesWe strongly believe that Early detection can save your life but what if you do get diagnosed? Understage of breast cancer can determine the best way to eliminate it. See below and learn more from the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Stage 0Stage 0 describes non-invasive breast cancers. There is no evidence of cancer cells invading tissue
Stage IStage I describes invasive breast cancer in which the tumor measures up to 2 centimeters. No lymph nodes are involved at this stage.
Stage IIStage II is divided into subcategories known as IIA and IIB.
Stage IIAStage IIA describes invasive breast cancer in which:No tumor can be found in the breast, but cancer cells are found in the lymph nodes.The tumor measures 2 centimeters or less and has spread to the lymph nodes.The tumor is from 2 centimeters to 5 centimeters and has not spread to the lymph nodes.
Stage IIBStage IIB describes invasive breast cancer in which:The tumor is from 2 centimeters to 5 centimeters and has spread to the lymph nodes.The tumor is larger than 5 centimeters but has not spread to the lymph nodes.
Stage IIIStage III: Stage III is divided into subcategories known as IIIA, IIIB, and IIIC.
Stage IIIAStage IIIA describes invasive breast cancer in which:No tumor is found in the breast. Cancer is found in lymph nodes that are clumped together or sticking to other structures, or cancer may have spread to lymph nodes near the breastbone.The tumor is 5 centimeters or smaller and has spread to lymph nodes that are clumped together or sticking to other structures.The tumor is larger than 5 centimeters and has spread to lymph nodes that are clumped together or sticking to other structures.
Stage IIIBStage IIIB describes invasive breast cancer in which:The tumor may be any size and has spread to the chest wall and/or skin of the breast.The tumor may have spread to lymph nodes that are clumped together or sticking to other structures, or cancer may have spread to lymph nodes near the breastbone.
Stage IIICStage IIIC describes invasive breast cancer in which:There may be no sign of cancer in the breast or, if there is a tumor, it may be any size and may have spread to the chest wall and/or the skin of the breast.The cancer has spread to lymph nodes above or below the collarbone.The cancer may have spread to lymph nodes or to lymph nodes near the breastbone.
Stage IVStage IV: Stage IV describes invasive breast cancer in which the cancer has spread to other organs of — usually the lungs, liver, bone, or brain.
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MALE BREAST CANCERA man has a 1 in 1000 chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer in his lifetime. Breast cancer in men is typically a form of breast cancer called Infiltrating Ductal Carcinoma (IDC). Chest size in men has nothing to do with breast cancer risk. All men have breast tissue that can become cancerous. While genetics due play a part in risk of breast cancer men, such as carrying the BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations, men with no family history are still at risk, just like breast cancer in women. Men generally face a higher mortality rate than women due to lack of awareness of the signs and symptoms, causing a delay in diagnosis and treatment. Just like women, men would benefit from checking their chests once a month.
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