Breast Cancer

What is Breast cancer?


  • Breast cancer is a type of cancer that is formed in the cells of breasts. Breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer diagnosed in women in the US. It can occur in both men and women, but is more common in women.



Who is impacted?


  • The following may increase your risk of developing breast cancer:
    • Being female → women are more likely to develop breast cancer
    • Increasing age → the risk of breast cancer increases as you age
    • History of breast conditions
    • Family history of breast cancer, especially inherited genes such as BRCA1 and BRCA2
    • Radiation exposure
    • Obesity
    • Beginning your period at a younger age, before age of 12
    • Beginning menopause at an older age
    • Having your first child at an older age
    • Never been pregnant
    • Postmenopausal hormone therapy
    • Drinking alcohol



How is Breast cancer diagnosed?


  • Breast cancer diagnosis is based on one or more of the following tests and procedures:
    • Breast exam
    • Mammogram
    • Breast ultrasound
    • Removing a sample of breast cells for testing (biopsy)
    • Breast MRI



How is Breast cancer treated?


  • Treatment for breast cancer is based off of stage, grade, size, and sensitivity of cancer cells to hormones. The following are treatment options:
    • Breast cancer surgery
      • Removing the breast cancer (lumpectomy)
      • Removing the entire breast (mastectomy)
      • Removing a limited number of lymph nodes (sentinel node biopsy)
      • Removing several lymph nodes (axillary lymph node dissection)
      • Removing both breasts
    • Radiation therapy
    • Chemotherapy
    • Hormone therapy
    • Targeted therapy drugs
    • Supportive (palliative) care