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Breast Cancer Signs, Symptoms, Latest Treatments, Tests and More

Breast Cancer Signs, Symptoms, Latest Treatments, Tests and More

 By Tara Haelle Medically Reviewed by Krystal Cascetta, MD Breast cancer is a disease that starts in the breast with a malignant tumor. A malignant tumor is a mass of cells that grows out of control. The cancerous cells can also metastasize, or move to other tissues or parts of the body. The cancer can develop in any of the three types of breast tissue: lobules, ducts, and connective tissue. Most cancer begins in the lobules (the milk-producing glands), or in the ducts, along which milk travels to the nipple. (1) But tumors can also develop in the fibrous and fatty connective tissue that surrounds the lobules and ducts. Several different types of breast cancer exist. The type of breast cancer and its stage, or how far it has grown, determine the treatment for it. Breast cancer that spreads into normal tissue is called invasive breast cancer. Noninvasive breast cancer stays within the breast lobule or duct. (2) Breast Cancer Is a Common Disease — but Numbers Are Going Down Breast cancer makes up about 30 percent of new cancer diagnoses in women and 15 percent of all new cancer diagnoses each year. (3) However, the rate of breast cancer cases began dropping in the year 2000 and have continued declining since. About one in eight women (about 12.4 percent of all women) will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer at some point in their lives. (2) Breast cancer can occur in anyone with breast tissue, but it’s much rarer in men than in women. The disease is more common in middle age. About one in four breast cancer cases occur in women between ages 55 and 64. Among women younger than 45, black women have the highest risk of breast cancer. Black women are also more likely to die from breast cancer than women of other races or ethnicities. (3) At least some of this increased risk is due to less access to follow-up care after an abnormal mammogram and lower rates of health insurance. (4) Rates of death from breast cancer have been decreasing since 1989. (3) The majority of women survive this cancer. Overall, 89.7 percent of women will survive at least five years after being diagnosed with breast cancer. As of 2015, more than 3.4 million women in the US were living with breast cancer. (2) Finding Your Best Treatment Team After receiving a diagnosis, you will have several decisions to make about the healthcare providers who will handle your treatment. Cancer treatment usually involves a team of people, such as a surgeon, a medical oncologist, a nurse practitioner, a counselor, a patient navigator, and specialists associated with your...

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Breast Cancer, Its Causes

Breast cancer is a malignant tumor developed from cells of the breast, and it is one of the most common cancers affecting women. At this time it has not been established what is the exact cause of breast cancer, but the latest research clearly points to several risks factors; These are the highest breast cancer risk factors; the latest researches have established that in the age group above 50 years there is a high incidence; on the other hand, in the age group below 25 years the incidence is very low. It is very important to say that this disease is very aggressive in patient 25-50 years old. Menstrual cycle is another factor that should be considered; common in the ladies who have a longer menstrual life, i.e. the onset of their menstrual cycle is earlier and cessation of menstruation is late. Women that smoke and drink alcohol increase their risk of developing breast cancer. Breast cancer is developed more frequently in older single women and married woman that have not given birth to children, or if given birth then have not breast fed their offspring. The women that have had a breast cancer on one side have greater risk to develop cancer on the opposite side, and if there are incidences of breast cancer in their families (mother, sisters and daughters), they are at greater risk too. Breast cancer is linked with obesity and higher intake of saturated fatty acids . Breast cancer is linked too, with the continuous or sequential uses of combined oestrogen plus progestin hormone therapy (CHT) . Women that have been using oral contraceptives for more than ten years are more vulnerable to the development of this disease. On the other hand, women doing 4-5 hours of exercises per week reduce their risk of developing breast cancer. In short, these facts derive from the statistical analysis; they should not be taken as causative or predisposing...

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Breast Cancer – A Death Sentence Caused By Neglect

The biggest majority of women who concern themselves over develping breast cancer are the ones who do not even bother to do a self examination (Not all) Self inspection of the breasts should be a main priority for every woman. Breast cancer caught in the early stages of growth will give better odds for the patient to control the disease with the help of today`s modern medicines and technology. Breast cancer is common among the female species and can be a death sentence if ignored. By neglecting yourself in this department with absent regular check ups then you can expect a painful road ahead – comgested of heartache and pain for those close to you as well. Breast cancer is treatable, so now is the time to set a date in the diary for regular self breast examination. One of the first signs or symptoms of breast cancer is a lump in the breast. You will find that most breast lumps discovered early are rated as 9 out of 10 as being benign. Breast lumpiness can be that of breast change which usually becomes more obvious just before the start of a period, particularly in women over the age of 35 Also cysts/sacs of fluid is not uncommon in the breast tissue causing a feel of lumpiness. Fibroadenoma is a collection of fibrous glandular tissue which is more notably known to occur in younger women If you notice a change in the shape/size of the breast or a lump even thickening then always check this out with your doctor. Other signs to look out for is dimpling of the skin or nipple shape changing, for example, if ithe nipple turns in or sinks back into the breast. Blood-stained discharge from the nipple or an unusual blemish or rash around the surrounding area needs to be checked out. A swelling or lump under your armpit can also be a sign. If you have found that you have any of the above symptoms then seek medical attention right away. Do not worry at this stage because breast lumps as such do not necessarily mean cancer. However the above mentioned inverted nipple or blood stained discharge etc can mean another type of ailment, either way these will need attention The doctor will examine the breast and if necessary will refer you to a specialist for further checks. If the results from a mammogram or ultra sound shows a cyst, then to have it removed may entail draining it through a fine needle. If the lump is solid then treatment will be with the use of a very fine needle where a sample of tissue will be taken...

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Best Tamale Recipe

The key to good tamales is to spread the masa (dough) thinly on the husk. I never get more disgusted than when I try tamales at a restaurant that are really just logs of steamed masa, with hardly any filling to speak of. The more the merrier when it comes to making tamales. They are certainly labor intensive, but oh, so rewarding. If you can’t talk your friends or family into helping, there must be plenty of good music to get you through. Plan two days for the project, and make sure you (or your neighbors) have enough freezer space to preserve the abundance. If you are a pro, serve tamales like my Grandma or my mom does with beef or chicken enchiladas, refried pinto beans or tostadas, and some Spanish rice. If you are planning to be a pro (moi?), start by serving your tamales with a Pozole soup (see here and here) which can be cooked all day or just simply Spanish rice. We like to mix the beef and pork for the tamales, but if you’re a purist, feel free to go with one or the other. Day 1: Cook meat (pork or beef, or both in separate pots) in a large pot of water (or in a slow-cooker filled with water) with an onion, 2 garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, salt and pepper. Cook for the day, 4 hours minimum. The more broth you can generate from the meat, the better! After the meat is cooked (so that it falls apart and shreds easily), remove from pot, set aside to cool, and puree the onion and garlic with the broth. Season broth mixture to taste with chili powder and salt. Shred meat finely with two forks (you can even chop it after shredding), and store covered in refrigerator separately from broth. Soak corn husks in water overnight. Day 2: Rinse and clean corn husks thoroughly. Drain well and pat dry. Season shredded meat with chili powder, salt, and cumin (optional) to taste. As you season the meat, add a small amount of broth to moisten meat, but it should not be runny. For every 2 cups of masa harina (meal), add ½ cup of shortening or lard, 1tsp. of salt, and enough chili powder to make a pink dough. Add broth mixture a little at a time to masa and mix with your hands to get a smooth, spreadable consistency. If you run out of broth, you can use hot water, but you will wish you had plenty of broth. (If you use about 6 pounds of meat, you will likely use about 8 cups of masa harina...

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Adherence With Oral Meds-An Issue In Breast Cancer "Drugs don't work in patients who don't take them."

In the battle against breast cancer, patients are increasingly prescribed oral medications, such as hormonal therapy, to limit the risk of disease recurrence. Research has indicated that patients should stay on these drugs for five years to gain maximum benefits. But recently, the healthcare community has started to ask a question once limited to managing common colds, not cancer: Do breast cancer patients take their medications as prescribed? According to the American Cancer Society, more than 200,000 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed every year in the U.S. Of those, approximately 100,000 have cancer types that are likely to respond to hormonal therapy. Taking the therapy as prescribed for the full five years can reduce their risk of recurrence. Easier Said than Done Based on findings from a recent symposium on medication adherence among breast cancer patients, candidates for hormonal therapy-some 500,000 women in the U.S.-may not be reaping the full benefits of their drug regimens. According to some research studies, non-compliance rates have reached as high as 40 percent. The Symposium, called the Compliance Strategic Initiative (CSI), addressed issues that lead to medication non-compliance among breast cancer patients, and it identified possible solutions to these issues. Representatives from leading patient advocacy organizations and professional healthcare associations, as well as oncology experts and survivors from across the nation, gathered to share their perspectives. The CSI was led by a Steering Committee which included representatives from the American Cancer Society, CancerCare, the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP), and Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization. “Through research, we know that five years of adjuvant hormonal therapy in women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer prolongs survival and reduces recurrence,” said D. Lawrence Wickerham, MD, associate chairman of the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project. “And yet, studies also show that not all patients stay on hormonal therapy as prescribed. It is important that healthcare providers understand why women make that decision, so we can address the issue with the information, resources and support needed to help them through this part of their treatment.” Based on results of the meeting, participants gained a better understanding of the factors that contributed to non-compliance. Among those factors: patients often do not feel empowered to talk with their doctors about tough issues, such as side effects; doctors and other healthcare professionals aren’t equipped with resources to assist patients in coping with or eliminating side effects; and after their acute phase of treatment, women may often feel they are left to manage therapy on their own. Physicians are under increasing pressures of time and performance and may not always have the skill set to listen well to their...

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A 10-Year Drive To Put The Brakes On Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a highly treatable disease that now has a survival rate of 85 percent. Yet more than 212,000 women are still diagnosed with the condition each year. Since early diagnosis is an important key to successful treatment, doctors say it’s important that all women over the age of 18 do a Breast Self-Exam (BSE) every month, two or three days after their menstrual cycle. In addition, women between 20 and 39 should have a clinical breast exam at least every three years and women 40 and older should have a mammogram every year. For the past 10 years, BMW of North America has worked with The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation-the largest fund-raiser for breast cancer research in America-to help spread the message of early detection and to help ensure that breast cancer research continues. The groups’ Ultimate Drive program has raised millions to help fund the efforts. The initiative, fully underwritten by BMW, consists of two fleets of specifically badged BMWs making a cross-country trek, stopping in communities along the way to hold daylong events. People will be invited to test-drive the cars-at no cost to the participants-to raise money for breast cancer research, education and screening treatment programs. The car company donates $1 directly to the Komen Foundation for each mile driven, along with whatever other proceeds are received from the program. Upon completion of every drive, each participant adds his or her own name to the Signature Vehicle-this year, a BMW 3-Series. This year’s goal is to raise over $1 million, bringing the program’s 10-year total up to over $10 million. To help celebrate the initiative’s 10th anniversary, the 240-stop cross-country trek has been expanded to include Alaska. People can test-drive the cars to help fight breast cancer. They can also: ; Regularly conduct BSEs, have clinical exams and mammograms ; Stop smoking and stressing ; Get more exercise ; Cut or reduce their alcohol consumption ; Watch their diet. Try to eat plenty of olive oil, fruits, vegetables, grains, fresh fish and...

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