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breast cancer, breast cancer facts, breast cancer information
Breast Cancer Facts

Basic Breast Cancer Facts

Breast cancer claims 40,000 lives every year in the United States alone, making it the second deadliest cancer for women right behind lung cancer. One of the reasons breast cancer is so dangerous is because it can spread quickly to other parts of the body. While breast cancer mostly affects women, it is possible for men to develop it as well. About 220,000 people were diagnosed with breast cancer every in the United States. Only skin cancer is more common among women.

Major Risk Factors for Breast Cancer
• Gender – Women are roughly 100 times more likely than men to develop breast cancer.
• Age – Invasive breast cancer is more likely in women aged 55 or older.
• Family History – Having a mother, sister or daughter with breast cancer can double your risk. Having two or more with it will triple your risk.

Breast Cancer Symptoms
Like many cancers, breast cancer is most easily treated if caught in its early stages. The most common sign of breast cancer is an unusual-feeling lump in your breast. It’s important to remember that all lumps should be investigated by a healthcare professional, but not all lumps are cancerous. You should pay particular attention to:
• Nipple tenderness or a lump forming in or near the breast or underarm
• A change in skin texture or color
• Dimpling anywhere on the breast
• Unexplained shrinking or swelling of the breast, especially if it’s only on one side
• A nipple that turns slightly inward or inverted
• Any nipple discharge not related to breast feeding

Treating Breast Cancer
There are a wide range of treatment options for breast cancer, including surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, mastectomies, and more. Discuss all the different methods with your doctor before deciding on a specific treatment plan tailored to fit your situation. And it never hurts to get a second opinion as well.

Recovering from Breast Cancer
Your doctor will lay out a detailed check-up program after your treatment is finished. Follow-up visits will occur every 3-6 months, depending on your risk, for the first few years. And then they’ll shift to once a year after about five years or so. Breast cancer can recur and spread to other parts of the body as well so it’s important that you stick to the schedule and manage your health responsibly. There are numerous support groups in local communities and online devoted specifically to breast cancer survivors. Reaching out to others in the same situation can help speed your recovery.

Sources
American Cancer Society
National Breast Cancer Foundation
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention 

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