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Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a type of cancer that develops in the cells of the breasts. Breast cancer cells typically form a tumour, which can be seen on x-rays or felt as a lump. It mostly affects women, however, men can develop it as well.

Symptoms of Breast cancer may include:

  • A breast lump or thickening that feels different from the surrounding tissue.
  • A change in the size, shape, or appearance of a breast.
  • Skin changes over the breast, such as dimpling.
  • Sunken or inverted nipple.
  • Peeling, scaling, crusting, or flaking of the pigmented skin area around the nipple (areola) or breast skin.
  • Redness or pitting of the skin around your breast.

Causes of Breast cancer:

When a person is healthy, their immune system fights against any abnormal DNA or growths. This does not happen when a person has cancer.

As a result, cells in breast tissue begin to grow abnormally and do not die as they should. This excessive cell development results in the formation of a tumour, which deprives surrounding cells of nutrition and energy.

Breast cancer typically begins in the inner lining of the milk ducts or the lobules that provide milk. It can then spread to other sections of the body.

Factors that increase the risk of developing Breast Cancer:

Age – The risk of developing breast cancer increases significantly with age.

Genetics – When a person has certain mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, they are more likely to develop breast cancer, ovarian cancer, or both. TP53 gene mutations are also linked to an increased risk of breast cancer. People are more likely to develop breast cancer if they have or have had a close relative who has breast cancer.

History of breast cancer or lumps – Some types of non-cancerous breast lumps can increase the risk of developing the cancer later in life. Atypical ductal hyperplasia and lobular carcinoma in situ are both examples.

Patients with a history of breast, ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer should discuss genetic testing with their doctors.

Extended estrogen exposure or breastfeeding – Long-term estrogen exposure appears to raise the risk of breast cancer.
This exposure could include having periods at a young age or entering menopause later in life. Breastfeeding appears to minimize the chance of developing breast cancer, especially if done for more than a year. This could be linked to the decrease in estrogen exposure that occurs after pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Obesity – Obesity after menopause may raise the risk of getting breast cancer, presumably due to higher estrogen levels. A high sugar intake could also have a role.

Exposure to radiation – Radiation therapy for another cancer may raise the risk of developing breast cancer later in life.

Consumption of alcohol – Regularly consuming excessive amounts of alcohol appears to play a role in the development of breast cancer.

Hormone Therapy – Women who use hormone treatment drugs that combine estrogen and progesterone to treat menopausal symptoms are at an increased risk of developing breast cancer.

Prevention includes maintaining a healthy lifestyle, as well as screening for breast cancer. Consult a doctor if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms or suspect that you might be developing breast cancers. Early diagnosis can significantly increase the rate of full recovery.

DR Bikram Kr Deka works in BLK-Max Super Speciality Hospital, which is the largest stand-alone private sector hospitals in Delhi and is best known for ROBOTIC SURGERY in India.
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