Breast cancer occurs when the cells in the breast divide and grow beyond normal control. Many times the tell tail sign is a bump that is large enough to be felt in the breast. Shockingly, for tumors to progress to that stage it could possibly have been growing for as long as ten years. Ten years is due to slow growth but there are aggressive tumors, which grow at a more rapid rate. There are two types of breast cancers Invasive and non-invasive. As long as we know, breast cancer has been a scary thought for every woman. Knowing what it is and the differences in the types of breast cancers are a necessity. Another fact that should not be ignored is that both men and women can get breast cancer and it is not limited to women only.
Invasive vs. Non-Invasive
Invasive cancer happens when the abnormal cells from the ducts and lobes grow out into the surrounding tissue and organs. This type of cancer can spread into the liver, lungs and bones traveling though the blood stream. The Non-Invasive cancer grows within you’re your milk ducts but have not spread into the surrounding organs or tissue.
Through the years many myths have been formed through a lack of knowledge and awareness of Breast Cancer.
What causes breast cancer?
- No one answer can sum this up. Scientists are lead to believe that a number of factors contribute to it such as lifestyle choices, family genes and even reproductive factors.
What are some of the signs?
- A lump or thickening in the breast
- Change in shape or size of breast
- Nipple discharge
- Pain in one spot that was not there before
- Itching on and around the nipple
- Scaly sores or rashes on or around the nipple
Can you self-diagnose?
- No, it is best to go to the doctor and have thorough tests done to determine your health status
How can I be more pro-active?
- Get Screened
- Do self-breast exams
- Make healthier lifestyle choices
- Know your family history
- Know yourself so if there is a change you can recognize it
Some Therapies and Treatments
- Radiation therapy
- Chemotherapy drugs
- Hormone therapy
- Targeted therapy
- Neoadjuvant therapies
There are quite a few ways in which you can help out in the fight against breast cancer. If you want to support a friend or family member or even a total stranger being a bit creative can bring a world of happiness to them. You can show support by attending their appointments, offering a listening ear, donating to the cause, cheer them up with fun activities and games, volunteering, Keep them laughing and even offer to help them out in everyday life. A little goes a long way especially when someone is feeling down and has lost hope. Helping mend a spirit is irreplaceable and assists them in being even more motivated to fight against this disease.
Jamie Pratt is a contributing writer for The Breast Cancer Society, Inc. — a comprehensive resource guide covering breast cancer information, facts, statistics and other pertinent information. Learn more about their cause and join the community that has already helped thousands of breast cancer patients and survivors.