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Breast Cancer: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment


The development of cancerous cells in the breast is termed as breast cancer and is one of the most common types of cancer in women. Over the past few decades, substantial efforts have been made across the globe to spread awareness about it and women are being encouraged to learn about the causes, effects and symptoms of the same. PSTakecare has a free medical expert helpline for you to be able to access all information regarding breast cancer, its diagnosis, treatment, recovery, etc. Recently, there has been a decline in the mortality rate owing to breast cancer on account of the influx of modern technology, rising medical know-how and improved awareness. Since all types of cancer are best fought when tackled at early stages, awareness plays a huge role in diagnosis and recovery.

The following are the various types of breast cancer:

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  • Angiosarcoma
  • Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS)
  • Inflammatory breast cancer
  • Invasive lobular carcinomas
  • Male breast cancer
  • Paget’s disease of the breast
  • Recurrent breast cancer

The early symptoms that help in detection of the breast cancer are:

  • Lumps in and around the chest region.
  • Change in the shape or size of the breasts.
  • Noteworthy changes in the skin over the breasts.
  • Peeling, pigmentation, flaking, redness of the skin

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should immediately consult a doctor and get it evaluated thoroughly. Don’t wait for the symptoms to disappear on their own; the sooner you opt for consultation, the better it will be. Lifestyle, hormonal misbalance, environmental factors have been known to contribute to the causes of breast cancer. Breast cancer surgery treatment depend on individual cases and diagnosis. The various types are:

  • Lumpectomy
  • Mastectomy
  • Sentinel node biopsy
  • Axillary lymph node dissection
  • Reconstruction

Details of Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy is another common follow-up treatment method that targets a tumour to destroy the cancerous cells. This process is undertaken around 4 weeks post-surgery and sessions of a few minutes are prescribed 4-5 times a week for 3-6 weeks. Radiation leads to darkening and irritation of the skin and fatigue.

Modified Radical Mastectomy

Modified Radical Mastectomy (MRM)consists of two components. One is Complete removal of the breast(the removal of affected breast) and the other is Axillary Lymph Node dissection or sampling (to examine the lymph nodes because this helps to identify whether the cancer cells have spread beyond the breasts).

Usage of Drugs to Fight Cancer

Breast cancer chemotherapy uses cytotoxic drugs in order to kill cancerous cells and to reduce the possibility of recurrence or spread. It is also sometimes used pre-surgery to reduce the size of a tumour. This process too has some side effects like fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, hair loss, etc.

Hormone Blocking Therapy

Hormone-blocking therapy is another procedure prescribed to reduce the risk of recurrence. It is the only option of treatment for patients who cannot undergo surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. It also can affect the fertility of women undergoing the therapy.

While there is no proven way of reducing the risk of breast cancer, a healthy lifestyle, with reduced alcohol consumption, balanced diet and physical activity will surely ensure an overall good health. As we are all aware that with cancer, there’s not much wiggle room left for us to act on. The key is to stay calm and positive throughout. Stress is a major negative factor which dampens the overall recovery and treatment process.

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