Breast Cancer: All You Need To Know
Oncologists refer to breast cancer as cancer that starts in the breast. It occurs when the cells that form in the breast grow out of control. X-ray images of lumps found on a breast can be signs of breast cancer. While women are more likely to develop breast cancer, men can also develop this disease. Besides spreading to the breast, breast cancer cells can grow in other parts of the body as well. This is known as metastasis.
The risk of a woman developing breast cancer is 1 in 8. It is important to be aware of risk factors regardless of your age. An early diagnosis of breast cancer can significantly improve your chances of survival.
Let’s have a look at everything you need to know about breast cancer.
The risk factors:
- Breast cancer genetic mutations (BRCA1 and/or BRCA2)
- Personal history of breast cancer before the age of 40
- Breast cancer diagnosed in more than two immediate relatives (mother, sister, daughter)
- Chest radiation
- Menstruating early (before the age of 12)
- First full-term pregnancy after age 30
- Consuming a lot of red meat and poor eating habits
- Racial factors (white-skinned women are at higher risk)
- A history of colon, endometrium, or ovarian cancer
- Recent use of oral contraceptives
- Heavy breasts
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- An unhealthy lifestyle
It is important for patients to know how their breasts normally feel, because normal breast tissue may be lumpy. However, not all lumps are cancerous. It’s common for women to perform breast self-exams so they can identify new lumps or larger lumps that may appear. Although breast self-examinations can be helpful, they should not be substituted for mammograms.
Hence, it is important to notice any changes in the breasts to get immediate medical attention.
Signs to look out for:
- Changes in your breast shape or size
- A lump under your arm or in your breast
- Inverted nipples (pushes inward instead of sticking out) or nipples that have changed position
- Swelling, skin redness, soreness, and rashes
- Bruising, dimpling, or bulging on your breast
- Discharge from the breasts (watery, milky, or yellow), or blood
Making some lifestyle changes can be helpful in the prevention of breast cancer, such as:
- You should consult your doctor when to begin mammograms and other breast cancer screening exams.
- It is recommended for women to check their breasts periodically as part of their breast self-examination for breast awareness.
- Choosing to drink alcohol, limit yourself to one drink per day.
- Try to exercise for at least 30 minutes each day. In case you haven’t exercised recently, speak to your doctor first about starting slowly.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Seek your doctor’s advice on healthy ways to lose weight. Reduce your calorie intake and accumulate your physical activity.
- Breast cancer risk may be reduced for women eating a Mediterranean diet containing extra-virgin olive oil and mixed nuts. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and nuts are the main staples of the Mediterranean diet that help prevent the chances of breast cancer.
Ways to diagnose:
- Mammogram: An x-ray of the breast, mammograms are used to detect breast cancer early.
- MRI: MRI scans use radio waves and powerful magnets instead of x-rays to create detailed images. Using an MRI scan can help learn more about the size and location of cancer.
- Breast Ultrasound: This test involves moving a small wand on your skin. As sound waves bounce off tissues, it picks up the echoes. A computer displays the echoes as a picture to help the doctor determine whether the lump is a cyst filled with fluid or if it’s a tumour.
- Nipple Discharge: If there is fluid coming from your nipple, it is sent to a lab to look for cancer cells in it.
- Radiation therapy
- Hormone therapy
OMNI Hospitals offers breast cancer patients dedicated breast cancer specialists who provide expert, personalized care utilizing the latest treatment innovations and technology. In addition, to provide care for people with breast cancer and other breast conditions, our internal specialists arrange for necessary tests and appointments based on your needs. As a result, you receive a holistic approach to healthcare that considers your entire needs at OMNI. Each treatment option is carefully considered by our team of experts in order to create a plan customized to your needs.
If you’re looking for more information for the best breast cancer treatment, call us at 888 0101 000