Breast cancer is an invasive type of cancer in females. It occurs when the cells in your breast grow and divide and create a mass of tissue called a tumor.
Breast cancer can begin in any part of the breast. It may start in the lobules, ducts, or connective tissue. The lobules are the glands that produce milk and, ducts are tubes that carry milk to the nipple. The connective tissue surrounds and holds everything together. Breast cancer typically occurs in the lobules or ducts.
Is Breast Cancer Painful?
A lump or a mass in the breast is are painless. Breast cancer-related pain is gradual but persistent. Ensure to consult your doctor if you experience these symptoms.
Symptoms of Breast Cancer
- Lump in the breast or underarm
- Swelling or thickening of part of the breast
- Irritation or dimpling of breast skin
- Flaky skin in the breast o nipple
- Redness in the breast and nipple
- Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area.
- Nipple discharge other than breast milk, including blood.
- Any change in the size or the shape of the breast.
- Pain in any area of the breast.
Kinds of Breast Cancer
- Invasive ductal carcinoma. The cancer cells begin in the ducts and then grow outside the ducts into other parts of the breast tissue.
- Invasive lobular carcinoma. When the cancer cells enter the breast lobules, it spreads to the tissues around the lobules.
Stages of Breast cancer
Stage 0. It is known as ductal carcinoma. It has not spread to surrounding tissues because the cancerous cells are only in the ducts.
Stage 1. At this stage, the tumor measures up to 2 centimeters across but, it does not affect the lymph nodes.
Stage 2. The tumor is 2 centimeters across and, it begins to spread to nearby nodes.
Stage 3. The tumor is up to 5 centimeters across and has spread to several lymph nodes.
Stage 4. The cancer cell spreads in the distant organs, most often the bones, liver, brain, or lungs.
Causes and Risk Factors of Breast Cancer
- Age and Genetics
- History of breast cancer or breast lumps.
- Dense breast tissue
- Estrogen exposure and breastfeeding
- Alcohol consumption
- Radiation exposure
- Hormone treatments
- Cosmetic implants and breast cancer survival
How to Diagnose Breast Cancer?
Your doctor will assess the signs and symptoms and provide further recommendations. It includes:
- Breast exam
- Imaging tests
Treatment for Breast Cancer
Your doctor will recommend anti-cancer drugs for treatment. The treatment process includes:
- Sentinel node biopsy
- Axillary lymph node dissection
- Radiation therapy
- Hormone-blocking therapy
- Biological treatment