What is Breast Cancer?
Definition of Breast Cancer: An abnormal growth of cells that originates in breast tissue. There are several types of breast cancer. The most common kinds of breast cancer form in the milk ducts or lobules, which are the glands that make milk. Although it's rare, men can get breast cancer, too. Below is a brief overview of the causes, symptoms and treatments, plus links to more information.
What Causes Breast Cancer? The exact cause is unknown, but researchers have found risk factors. Older women and women with mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes are more likely to develop breast cancer. Having a close relative with breast cancer, being overweight, and using hormone replacement therapy are also risk factors. [5 Myths about Breast Cancer]
Is Breast Cancer Contagious?No.
Signs & Symptoms:
· A lump in the breast is a common symptom of breast cancer.
· Unusual, especially bloody, discharge from the nipple.
· Changes to the skin, shape or texture of the breast.
Other conditions have these same symptoms, so visit your doctor for a diagnosis.
Treatment & Remedies: Local treatments fight cancer within the breast and include various surgeries or radiation. Systemic treatments fight cancer cells throughout the body and may include hormone therapy, chemotherapy and targeted therapy; meaning drugs that specifically block the growth of tumor cells.
· Breast cancer in its early stages usually has no symptoms.
· An estimated 226,870 women and 2,190 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012.
· As of this writing, nearly 2.6 million people living in the United States have been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Sources and More Information:
This information is not meant to provide specific medical advice. It is for educational purposes only. We recommend you consult a qualified health care professional for diagnoses and treatment advice, and call 9-1-1 in emergencies.
MORE FROM LiveScience.com