The number of women diagnosed with breast cancer is on the rise. This may be a result of more women going to the doctor for regular checkups. Many women are undergoing mammograms, are using oral contraceptives and have weight management and fitness routines. Some have cosmetic surgery as well. There are more cases of women with this disease being diagnosed with this type of cancer.
Most women have some risk of developing this cancer, but not all will develop it. It has been estimated that about one in fifty women will develop breast cancer. The more you are screened for cancer the better your chances will be of surviving the disease. Most physicians recommend that their patients have mammograms three to four times a year, they also recommend that their patients use oral contraceptives for twenty years or more and keep an eye on weight and fitness. This is just the beginning of what must be done to prevent this deadly disease from spreading.
There is no one single cause for breast cancer. It can be hereditary, caused by hormones, genetics and stress. A woman’s age, weight, the amount of fat in her mammary glands and the amount of estrogen she produces are all factors that can add to her risk of developing this cancer. The number of women diagnosed with this type of cancer has increased over the last fifteen years. It is also associated with a greater number of African American women in their late twenties and thirties.
There are many treatment options available to women with breast cancer. The doctor will discuss with you the options and what would be best for your particular situation. Your treatment will be determined by what stage the cancer is, the size of the tumor, the number of cancer cells present and the survival rate of the individual. Different treatments will be administered based on what stage the cancer is. The types of treatments are:
Surgery: Surgery is an option for those who have not responded well to the first treatment options. A lumpectomy or mastectomy removes the tumor. The doctor will use the lymph nodes in the armpit or groin to remove the lymph nodes. Sometimes both the lymph nodes and the armpit glands are removed. The lymph nodes will be re-stimulated with radiation therapy.
Chemotherapy: This is a treatment that is often prescribed as a last option. The doctor will use a variety of different medications to stop the growth of the cancerous cells. Sometimes it consists of several drug regimens. Chemotherapy is often combined with surgery. It is most successful when given to people with an early stage of the disease. It is one of the few options for decreasing the number of women diagnosed with the disease.
The chemotherapy regimens and the doses of drugs depend on the type of cancer, the stage of the illness and the responder’s medical history. If the doctor feels that another form of treatment is needed, he may consider the use of targeted drug combinations. There are different ways to administer the chemotherapy drugs. Some combinations are given intravenously, while others are given orally. Some combination treatments are used for both men and women.
Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy is also another option for women diagnosed with breast cancer. It is very effective at removing the abnormal tissue from the affected area. It does, however, cause scarring after surgery, so a great deal of consideration is given to the patient’s weight and other health concerns prior to undergoing radiation therapy. Many women choose to combine chemotherapy and surgery.