Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to grow out of control. The tumor is malignant (cancer) if the cells can grow into (invade) surrounding tissues or spread (metastasize) to distant areas of the body. Breast cancer occurs almost entirely in women, but men can get breast cancer, too. Breast cancers can start from different parts of the breast. Most breast cancers begin in the ducts that carry milk to the nipple (ductal cancers). Some start in the glands that make breast milk (lobular cancers).
Breast cancer can spread when the cancer cells get into the blood or lymph system and are carried to other parts of the body. It's also important to understand that most breast lumps are benign and not cancer (malignant). Non-cancerous breast tumors are abnormal growths, but they do not spread outside of the breast and they are not life threatening. We at CAN-C are well-known for breast cancer treatment in Bangalore.
How breast cancer starts?
Changes or mutations in DNA can cause normal breast cells to become cancer. Certain DNA changes are passed on from parents (inherited) and can greatly increase your risk for breast cancer. Other lifestyle-related risk factors can increase your chance of developing breast cancer.
Get information about signs and symptoms, causes and risk factors, types, diagnosis, staging and prevention about breast cancer.
Knowing how your breasts normally look and feel is an important part of breast health. Finding breast cancer as early as possible gives you a better chance of successful treatment. The most common symptom of breast cancer is a new lump or mass. A painless, hard mass that has irregular edges is more likely to be cancer, but breast cancers can be tender, soft, or rounded. They can even be painful. Other possible symptoms of breast cancer include:
Swelling of all or part of a breast (even if no distinct lump is felt)
Irritation or dimpling of breast skin (sometimes looking like an orange peel)
Breast or nipple pain
A nipple turned inward into the breast
Painless lump in the axilla (armpit)
A change in the size or shape of the breast
Fluid, other than breast milk, from the nipple, without squeezing
Cancer occurs due to mutations or changes in the genes responsible for regulating the normal growth of cells and keeping them in a healthy condition. These mutated genes may be inherited from parents, or may result from external influences of radiation or cancer-causing chemicals, or wear and tear during the aging process. Hormones also play a major role in the development of breast cancer.
A risk factor is anything that increases your chances of getting a disease, such as cancer. But having a risk factor, or even many, does not mean that you are sure to get the disease. There are some risk factors that you can control.
Heavy smoking and alcohol consumption
Being overweight or obese
Not being physically active
Dense breast tissue, Breast implants
Family or previous history of breast cancer
Not having children after age 30
Not breastfeeding after child birth
Early menstruation (before age 12) and late menopause (after age 55)
Hormone therapy after menopause
There are several types of breast cancer. The type of breast cancer you have depends on where in the breast it started and other factors. There are many types of breast cancer. The most common types are in situ and invasive breast cancer. The type of breast cancer is determined by the specific cells in the breast that are affected. Most breast cancers are carcinomas. Carcinomas are tumors that start in the epithelial cells that line organs and tissues throughout the body.
In situ breast cancers:
Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS; also known as intraductal carcinoma) is a non-invasive or pre-invasive breast cancer. In situ breast cancer is only in the milk ducts and lobules (milk-producing glands).
Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS) may also be called lobular neoplasia. In LCIS, cells that look like cancer cells are growing in the lobules of the milk-producing glands of the breast, but they don't grow through the wall of the lobules.
Invasive (infiltrating) breast cancer:
Breast cancers that have spread into surrounding breast tissue are known as invasive breast cancer. It may eventually become metastatic, meaning it spreads to other organs, like the bones or lungs. These are the most common types of invasive breast cancer: invasive ductal carcinoma, invasive lobular carcinoma, Inflammatory breast cancer.
CAN-C: Most leading centre for breast cancer treatment in Bangalore.
If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, we at CAN-C in Bangalore will offer you further tests to help us decide the best possible approaches to your treatment. Any decisions about your treatment will always be made in consultation with you.
Tests and procedures used to diagnise breast cancer include:
Breast exam: Doctor will check both of your breasts and lymph nodes in your armpit, feeling for any lumps or other abnormalities.
Mammogram: A mammogram is an X-ray of the breast which is commonly used to screen for breast cancer.
Breast ultrasound: Ultrasound uses sound waves to produce images of structures deep within the body. Ultrasound may be used to determine whether a new breast lump is a solid mass or a fluid-filled cyst.
Breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): An MRI machine uses a magnet and radio waves to create pictures of the interior of your breast.
The stage of a cancer describes its size and whether it has spread from where it started. Staging helps determine how serious the cancer is and how best to treat it. There are different systems for describing the stage of a cancer. The most commonly used ones are the TNM staging system.
The TNM staging system gives the complete stage of the cancer:
T describes the size of the tumour.
N describes whether the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes and which nodes are involved. For example, N0 means no lymph nodes are affected. N1 means there are cancer cells in 1 to 3 of the lymph nodes.
M describes whether the cancer has spread to another part of the body. For example, M0 means the cancer has not spread (metastasised) to other parts of the body.
Here, at CAN-C, we provide the very best breast cancer treatment (in Bangalore) for all stages of breast cancer.
There is no sure way to prevent breast cancer. But there are things you can do that might lower your risk. For women who are known to be at increased risk for breast cancer, there are additional steps that might reduce the risk of developing breast cancer.
Be physically active: Keeping fit and active has many health benefits. Being active most days of the week appears to cut one's chances of breast cancer (after menopause), bowel cancer and possibly prostate cancer.
Eat Healthy: To reduce the risk of certain cancers, have healthy body weight, regular exercises and a healthy diet.
Avoid Smoking and Alcohol: To reduce the risk of cancer, alcohol and smoking should be avoided. If you choose to drink, limit your intake.
Treatment for early or locally advanced breast cancer aims to remove the cancer and reduce the risk of the cancer spreading or coming back (recurring). As there are different types of breast cancer, Treatment of breast cancer depends on the type of breast cancer, its size and position, whether it has spread, the individual's age and general health, and the individual's preference. Here, at CAN-C, we will recommend the most suitable breast cancer treatment in Bangalore. Depending on your condition, you may receive one treatment or a combination at the same time or in succession. Treatments used for breast cancer include:
Most women with breast cancer have some type of surgery as part of their treatment. The types of surgery you will be offered depend mainly on:
1. the size and location of the tumour
2. the size of the breast
3. if the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes
4. if you have already had any treatments for breast cancer
Surgery for breast cancer includes breast-conserving surgery, mastectomy and lymph node surgeries. There are different types of breast surgery, and it may be done for different reasons, depending on the situation. For example, surgery may be done to:
1. Remove as much of the cancer as possible (breast-conserving surgery or mastectomy)
2. Find out whether the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes under the arm (sentinel lymph node biopsy or axillary lymph node dissection)
3. Restore the breast's shape after the cancer is removed (breast reconstruction)
4. Relieve symptoms of advanced cancer
Radiation therapy is almost always given after breast-conserving surgery. In some cases it may be given after a mastectomy. It is also used to treat breast cancer that has spread to the bones, lungs or brain. Radiation therapy is needed in addition to other treatments. The need for radiation depends on what type of surgery you had, whether your cancer has spread to the lymph nodes or somewhere else in your body, and in some cases, your age. Tumors that are large or involve the skin might also need radiation. You could have just one type of radiation, or a combination of different types.
Radiation therapy is treatment with high-energy rays (such as x-rays) or particles that destroy cancer cells. Two main types of radiation therapy can be used to treat breast cancer:
External beam radiation: External beam radiation therapy uses a machine to direct radiation through the skin to the tumour and tissue around it. This is the most common type of radiation therapy for women with breast cancer. A machine focuses the radiation on the area affected by the cancer.
Types and schedules of external beam radiation are: Hypofractionated radiation therapy, Intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT) and 3D-conformal radiotherapy.
Internal radiation (brachytherapy): For this treatment, a radioactive source is put inside the body for a short time. There are different types of brachytherapy: Interstitial brachytherapy and Intracavitary brachytherapy.
Chemotherapy is a common treatment for breast cancer. It is often given after surgery for early stage breast cancer to reduce the risk that the cancer will come back. It is also the main treatment for advanced or metastatic breast cancer. Combinations of chemotherapy drugs are most often used for breast cancer because they are more effective than single drugs. Chemotherapy (chemo) uses anti-cancer drugs that may be given intravenously (injected into your vein) or by mouth. The drugs travel through the bloodstream to reach cancer cells in most parts of the body.
Not all women with breast cancer will need chemo, but there are several situations in which chemo may be recommended:
After surgery (adjuvant chemotherapy): Adjuvant chemo is used to try to kill any cancer cells that might have been left behind or have spread but can't be seen, even on imaging tests.
Before surgery (neoadjuvant chemotherapy): Neoadjuvant chemo can be used to try to shrink the tumor so it can be removed with less extensive surgery.
For advanced breast cancer: Chemo can be used as the main treatment for women whose cancer has spread outside the breast and underarm area, either when it is diagnosed or after initial treatments.
The most common drugs used for adjuvant and neoadjuvant chemo include:
1. Anthracyclines, such as doxorubicin (Adriamycin) and epirubicin (Ellence)
2. Taxanes, such as paclitaxel (Taxol) and docetaxel (Taxotere)
3. 5-fluorouracil (5-FU)
4. Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
5. Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
Targeted therapy is a cancer treatment that uses drugs. Targeted therapy may be given alone or in combination with chemotherapy, hormonal therapy or both. Targeted drugs are designed to block the growth and spread of cancer cells and work differently from chemotherapy drugs, which attack all cells that are growing quickly (including cancer cells). Some targeted drugs can help other types of treatment work better.
At CAN-C, get targeted therapy for breast cancer treatment in Bnagalore.
Immunotherapy is the use of medicines to stimulate a person's own immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells more effectively. Immunotherapy can be used to treat some types of breast cancer.
An important part of the immune system is its ability to keep itself from attacking normal cells in the body. To do this, it uses "checkpoints" - proteins on immune cells that need to be turned on (or off) to start an immune response. Breast cancer cells sometimes use these checkpoints to avoid being attacked by the immune system. Drugs that target these checkpoints, known as immunotherapy drugs, help to restore the immune response against the breast cancer cells.
Hormonal therapy is often used to treat hormone receptor-positive breast cancer. We, at CAN-C is well-known for providing hormone therapy breast cancer treatment in Bangalore. Post-menopausal women are given different hormonal therapy drugs than premenopausal women. Some types of breast cancer are affected by hormones in the blood. ER-positive and PR-positive breast cancer cells have receptors (proteins) that attach to estrogen, which helps them grow. There are different ways to stop estrogen from attaching to these receptors.
Hormone therapy is a form of systemic therapy, meaning it reaches cancer cells almost anywhere in the body and not just in the breast. It's recommended for women with hormone receptor-positive (ER-positive and/or PR-positive) breast cancers.
There are several types of hormone therapy, which use different ways to keep estrogen from helping the cancer grow. Most types of hormone therapy for breast cancer either lower estrogen levels or stop estrogen from acting on breast cancer cells.
Drugs that block estrogen receptors: Tamoxifen, Fulvestrant (Faslodex)
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