Taasir English News Network | Uploaded on 25-Oct-2019
Breast Cancer Awareness month marked in October highlights the importance of timely diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer. According to research, one woman dies of breast cancer every 8 minutes in India. With this one statistic, you can understand that breast cancer has become the most common type of cancer found in women and is the second leading cause of their death after heart diseases. While cancer cannot be prevented, the deaths it causes can surely be reduced. Proper awareness of the symptoms and timely diagnosis can help in fighting and treating this illness. Here is everything you need to know about breast cancer. More awareness about the disease can help in preventing it and also help you reach timely treatment.
Breast cancer may not always show any sign in its early stage. And whenever it does, following are the most common reported:
- A lump that feels different from rest of the breast.
- Discharge from nipple other than the breast milk may be a breast cancer symptom
- Rash on or around nipple
- Breast swelling
- Obvious asymmetry between two breasts
- Red and hot skin
- Pain or tenderness
- Growth of the vein over breast
- Pulling or puckering of the skin under the tumor
- Retraction of the skin on the breast
- Nipple retraction
- Destruction of the skin
Keep in mind that the symptom you notice may not necessarily be breast cancer symptoms but could also be the cause of another health issue. So, it is important for you to get it checked by a professional for correct diagnosis.
What are the risk factors of breast cancer?
A lot of factors can contribute to development of breast cancer in women. The common ones are:
1. Age- Women over the age of 50 are more prone to developing breast cancer. However, lately cases of breast cancer in younger women are also on a rise.
2. Family history- If you have a history of breast cancer in your family, then you need to be more alert about your health.
3. Clinical history- Risk of developing breast cancer is higher if you have previously suffered with benign cancer.
4. Late pregnancy- Women who have their first pregnancy late, usually after 35, are at risk.
5. Prolonged hormonal exposure- A long menstrual life or possibly use of hormone replacement therapy after the menopause expose women to an increased risk of developing breast cancer.
6. Lifestyle – Being overweight or obese after menopause, physical inactivity, a high fat diet and high alcohol consumption can play an important role in the development of breast cancer.
Regular screenings can help in the early diagnosis of the cancer even before the symptoms appear. Or it can be identified when you get your symptoms tested. Most breast lumps turn out to be not-cancerous or benign which is not life threatening and they do not spread to other parts of the body. However, when cancer is suspected, microscopic analysis is necessary to correctly diagnose the disease, its type and stage.