Breast Cancer:Symptoms, Stages, Diagnosis, Treatment and Prevention

Breast Cancer

Nowadays a breast cancer has become a very common terminology that we hear from our friends, family or maybe some other source. It is very important to diagnose it before it takes your life away. This article is an awareness about what breast cancer is and how to prevent it.

What is Breast Cancer

What is Breast Cancer


What is Breast Cancer

Breast cancer means modifications in the normal cells that were healthy earlier, but now due to some changes they became abnormal. Treatment is necessary as without treatment the cancerous cell starts spreading into other parts of the body.

Breast Cancer

Breast Cancer

Statistics show that it is the most common type of cancer occurring in females and it is the second leading cause of cancer in females. About 1/8th of the females are suffering from Breast cancer. An early diagnosis can prevent the mortality associated with it.

What are the Symptoms of Breast Cancer

Early symptoms include a lump on breasts, breasts will show changes in size/shape, there may be discharges from nipples (may be bloody discharge), ulcers/changes in skin color, thickening of the skin of breast, the nipple may be inverted, dimpling in the nipple and pain in nipples.

Symptoms of Breast Cancer

Symptoms of Breast Cancer

Late symptoms of breast cancer include pain in the bones. This is an indication of the distant spread of cancer. Also, there may be swelling of the lymph nodes, difficulty in breathing and general fatigue.

What are the Stages of Breast Cancer

  • Stage 0 – Insitu- meaning cancerous cells are confined to breast ducts
  • Stage1-Invasive meaning it has started attacking healthy tissue
  • Stage 1 is further subdivided into stage 1a (spread to the fatty tissue of breast) and stage 1b (invasion to the lymph nodes)
  • Stage2- cancerous cell is now growing/spreading or both
  • Stage3-invasion to nearby lymph nodes or muscles
  • Stage4-Metastatic invasion to bones, liver, lungs and brain
  • What are the survival rates of breast cancer
  • Stage0-100%
  • Stage1-100%
  • Stage2-93%
  • Stage3-72%
  • Stage4-22%
  • Diagnosis of Breast Cancer

Mammography should be done as early as possible so that the treatment can be done at an early stage
Biopsy of the lump which is suspected in the breasts.

How to Self-Examine for Breast Cancer

Check for any lumps on breasts/any abnormalities like Breast discharges/changes in color.

self-examine for Breast cancer

self-examine for Breast cancer


What are the Risk Factors for Breast Cancer

  1. Obesity
  2. Age- with the increasing age the risk of developing Breast cancer, no childbirth, childbirth at a late age.
  3. Genes- BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes increase risk, family history is also a major risk factor
  4. Personal factors- menstruation starting before 12 years or menopause after 55yrs

What is the Treatment of Breast Cancer

  1. Surgery
  2. Hormone therapy
  3. Targeted therapy-it specifically attacks only cancer cells excluding normal cells
  4. Surgical treatment

It includes physical removal of the tumor along with some part of the normal surrounding tissue, lymph nodes may also be biopsied at the time of surgery.

  1. Mastectomy-whole Breast is removed from this type of surgery.
  2. Quadrantectomy-1/4th part of the breast is removed in this type of surgery.
  3. Lumpectomy- Only a few portions of Breast are removed.

Other than these there are radiation therapy, chemotherapy for metastatic Breast cancer.
Preventive treatment also includes medications such as Tamoxifen, which is used for women with high-risk factors.

How can we Prevent Breast Cancer

A change in lifestyle can help in preventing this disease. Obesity is the cause of Breast cancer. So maintain the weight, Remaining physically active, brisk walking will help, Control of dietary habits such as less alcohol consumption, prevent tobacco consumption, encourage breastfeeding, consume Citrus fruits, omega-3 also helps in reducing the risk, consumption of soy-based eatables.

 How can we prevent breast cancer

How can we prevent breast cancer

Breast cancer is curable only when there is an early approach to the clinician. Any suspected lumps on breasts or any abnormal changes shouldn’t be ignored a patient should consult and get the diagnosis done to rule out cancer.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply