Breast Cancer Information

Know the Breast Cancer Risk Factors

Anything that increases your chance of getting a disease is called a risk factor. Breast cancer risk factors include:
 
  • Older age
  • Early menarche (menstruation)
  • Older age at first birth or never having given birth
  • A personal history of breast cancer or benign (non-cancerous) breast disease
  • A mother or sister with breast cancer
  • Treatment with radiation therapy to the breast/chest
  • Breast tissue that is dense on a mammogram
  • Hormone use (such as estrogen and progesterone)
  • Excessive drinking of alcoholic beverages
  • Being Caucasian.

 

(For a closer look, click Breast Cancer Risk Factors.) 

 

Causes and Symptoms of Breast Cancer

Most breast cancer causes are not known. In 5 to 10 percent of breast cancer cases, there is a hereditary component.
 
(Click Breast Cancer Symptoms or Breast Cancer Causes for more information.)
 

Staging Information

Breast cancer is a complex disease. All breast cancer cases are not the same. Once breast cancer has been found, more tests will be done to find out the specific pattern of breast cancer. This important step is called staging. Knowing the exact breast cancer stage will help your doctor plan your treatment. Your doctor will want to know:
 
  • The size of the tumor and exactly where it is in your breast
  • If the cancer has spread within your breast
  • If cancer is present in your lymph nodes under your arm
  • If cancer is present in other parts of your body.

 

(Click Breast Cancer Stages to learn more about this topic.) 

 

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