Breast Cancer

By: Madison Frasher

Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is cancer that forms in the tissues of the breast, usually the ducts and lobules. Breast cancer can occur in both men and women, but male breast cancer is rare.
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Symptoms of Breast Cancer

Early breast cancer usually doesn't have symptoms. The symptoms for males and female

when breast cancer grows


  • unusual lump in the breast or armpit
  • change in the size, shape, or feel of the breast or nipple
  • redness, dimpling, or puckering of the breast or nipple
  • nipple retraction
  • fluid coming from the nipple, can be bloody, clear to yellow, green, and look like pus


  • breast lump
  • breast pain
  • tenderness

Symptoms of Advanced Breast Cancer

  • bone pain
  • breast pain or discomfort
  • skin ulcers
  • swelling of in the armpit
  • weight loss

Causes of Breast Cancer

The cancer starts when some breast cells start to grow abnormally.

Risk Factors You Can't Control

  • Age and Gender- chances increase as you get older, more likely in females than males
  • Family History of Breast Cancer- higher risk if close relative had breast, ovarian, uterine, or colon cancer
  • Genes- some people are born with genetic mutations that increase the risk
  • Menstrual cycle- women who got their periods before age 12 or went through menopause after age 55

Risk Factors You Can Control

  • Alcohol use- having more than one to two glasses of alcohol a day increases the risk
  • Childbirth- women never having children increase the risk, while being pregnant more than once or being pregnant earlier reduces the risk.
  • Obesity- no real link, but people say that obese women produce more estrogen, which can start the development of breast cancer
  • Radiation- if you've received radiation therapy at a young age or young adult, you have a high risk of developing breast cancer
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy- higher risk if it involved estrogen
  • DES- women who took the medicine to prevent miscarriages increase the risk



Women with high risk may consider mastectomy. This is surgery to remove the breast before cancer is diagnosed. Women considering this would be:

  • women who have already had one breast removed due to cancer
  • women with a strong family history of breast cancer
  • women with genes or genetic mutations that raise their risk

Your doctor may do a total mastectomy, but that won't completely eliminate the risk of breast cancer.

Healthy Lifestyle

  • choose food and portion sizes that are healthy
  • choose whole grains
  • eat more fruits and vegetables each day
  • limit processed and red meat in the diet
  • limit alcohol consumption


Based on many factors

  • type and stage of cancer
  • whether the cancer is sensitive to certain hormones
  • whether the cancer overproduces

Treatments may include

  • chemotherapy
  • radiation therapy
  • surgery- lumpectomy- remove the lump or mastectomy- removes all or part of the breast and possible nearby structures
  • hormone therapy


Sometimes it can't be detected from symptoms because early stages of the cancer don't show any.

Breast cancer is diagnosed by doing several tests. If the disease is found, then the doctor will have more tests taken to determine if the disease is present.


  • About 1 in 8 U.S. women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of their lifetime.
  • Breast cancer is the leading cause of death among women ages 35 to 50.
  • 8 out of 9 women who are diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history of the disease.
  • 250,000 U.S. women living with the disease are under the age of 40.
  • 70% of women who develop breast cancer have no identifiable risk factors.