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Breast Cancer : Overview of symptoms, causes, diagnosis, risk factor and treatment


Breast cancer is a disorder in women, which starts in the inner lining of milk ducts or the lobules that supply them milk. Breast cancer may include lump in the breast, a change in breast or red scaly patch on skin. Breast cancer usually builds up with the age or it can be genetics. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Breast Cancer : Overview of symptoms, causes, diagnosis, risk factor and treatment

Breast Cancer
Breast Cancer
  • Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast
    begin to grow out of control. These cells usually
    form a tumor that can often be seen on an x-ray
    or felt as a lump. The tumor is malignant
    (cancer) if the cells can grow into
    (invade) Overview of breast cancer-Breast
    cancer occurs when cell of breast began to grow
    out of control often from a tumor which can start
    from a lump.
  • The tumor occurs malignant when the cells grow in
    the surrounding tissue, i.e spread in the
    different parts of the body.
  • The cancer can start in all part of the breast,
    but most cancers start in the inner lining of the
    milk ducts or globules that supply them with
    milk, rarely cancer start is the tissue of the
  • Breast cancer is the most common cause of cancer
    in women, men can also have breast cancer but
    it's rare (2000 new cases registered every year
    in US).
  • It accounts for 16 of all female cancers, and
    22.4 of invasive cancer worldwide, and 18.2 of
    all cancer deaths worldwide. One in every eight
    women in US has breast cancer.

Symptoms of breast cancer
  • Any women having certain symptoms mentioned
    below should be consulted with a doctor
  • A lump in a breast
  • A pain in the armpits or breast that does not
    seem to be related to the woman's menstrual
  • Pitting or redness of the skin of the breast like
    the skin of an orange
  • A rash around (or on) one of the nipples
  • A swelling (lump) in one of the armpits
  • An area of thickened tissue in a breast
  • One of the nipples has a discharge sometimes it
    may contain blood
  • The nipple changes in appearance it may become
    sunken or inverted
  • The size or the shape of the breast changes
  • The nipple-skin or breast-skin may have started
    to peel, scale or flake

Causes of breast cancer
  • The cause of breast cancer is still not known.
  • In breast cancer, the normal cells become
    cancerous through the mutation of cell DNA
    although some can be inherited but most cases
    occur that DNA changes related to breasts cancer
    occur during one's lifetime.
  • Proto-oncogenes can also help, if these cells
    mutate the growth of any cell goes out of
    control.So, it can lead to cancer.

Risk factors of breast cancer
  • Though the causes of breast cancer is not known
    there are some factors which can increase the
    chance of getting breast cancer such as
  • Age The chances of getting breast
    cancer increases with the age of a person.
  • Family history The risk of breast cancer is
    higher among women who have relatives with the
    disease. Having a close relative increases the
    risk to double.
  • Personal history Women who had a breast cancer
    before, even a non-invasive one has a higher
    chance of getting breast cancer in the other
  • Menstruation Women who started their menstrual
    cycle at a younger age (before 12) or went
    through menopause later (after 55) have a
    slightly increased risk.
  • Breast tissue Women with dense breast tissue (as
    documented by mammogram) have a higher risk of
    getting breast cancer.
  • Race White women have a higher risk of
    developing breast cancer. But African-American
    women have more proliferative and invasive tumors
    when they have them.

Risk factors of breast cancer
  • Radiation-Exposure to previous chest radiation or
    use of diethylstilbestrol increases the risk of
    breast cancer.
  • Having no children or the first child after age
    30 increases the risk of breast cancer.
  • Breastfeeding for one and a half to two years
    might slightly lower the risk of breast cancer.
  • Being overweight or obese increases the risk of
    breast cancer.
  • High sugar intake can increase the risk of
    breasts cancer.
  • Use of oral contraceptives in the last 10 years
    increases the risk of breast cancer.
  • Using combined hormone therapy after menopause
    increases the risk of breast cancer.
  • Alcohol use increases the risk of breast cancer.
  • Genetic risk factors The most common causes are
    mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes (breast
    cancer genes). Inheriting a mutated gene from a
    parent means that one has a significantly higher
    risk of developing breast cancer.

Diagnosis of breast cancer
  • Mammogram-Mammogram is the X-ray of breast which
    is used to detect any abnormalities or changes in
    the breast. Women of higher age i.e. above 45
    should undergo mammogram annually to detect any
    risk, or women of lower that age and higher that
    age must undergo mammogram to fall out the risk.
  • Breast test-A test is done by the physician who
    looks for lump or any abnormalities in the breast
    which can indicate cancer.
  • Ultrasound of breast-Ultrasound of a breast is
    done to look for dense breast tissues, or certain
    changes in the breast which can be felt but not
    seen in mammogram.
  • MRI of breast-This technique is useful for women
    who had already detected with breast cancer. It
    helps to measure the size of the cancer, other
    tumors in breast and check for tumor in other
  • Breast biopsy-Biopsy of the breast is done, by
    taking a small tissue sample from the breast and
    studies it to find any abnormal or different
    cells in the breast tissue.

Treatments of breast cancer
  • Treatments of breast cancer-
  • The treatment of breast cancer take into account
    several factors of patient before starting the
    treatment such as the stage of the cancer, the
    health of the patient, the age of the patient
    and also the type of the breast cancer.
  • Surgery
  • Breast-conserving surgery (lumpectomy) - Only the
    part of the breast containing the cancer is
    removed along with some surrounding tissue. The
    removal of the breast tissue size depends on the
    size and location of the tumor.
  • Mastectomy -In this surgery the entire breast is
    removed, including all of the breast tissue and
    sometimes other nearby tissues. Some women may
    also get a double mastectomy, in which both
    breasts are removed.

Treatments of breast cancer
  • If the cancer has passed on to the nearby lymph
    nodes than certain lymph node surgery is needed
    for the removal.
  • Sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) - In this
    method only the lymph nodes under the arm to
    which the cancer would likely to spread is
  • Axillary lymph node dissection (ALND) -In this
    method anywhere from about 10 to 40 (though
    usually less than 20) lymph nodes from under the
    arm. This technique is avoided as removal of such
    many lymph nodes can cause serious side effects.
  • Radiation therapy
  • Breast radiation therapy - after a lumpectomy,
    radiation is administered to the remaining breast
    tissue to ensure no return of cancer.
  • Chest wall radiation therapy - this is applied
    after a mastectomy to the chest walls or places
    where any drains which excited the body after
  • Breast boost - a high-dose of radiation therapy
    is given after lumpectomy to the whole breast.

Treatments of breast cancer
  • Lymph nodes radiation therapy - the radiation is
    aimed at the axilla (armpit) and surrounding area
    to destroy cancer cells that have reached the
    lymph nodes
  • Breast Brachytheraphy-
  • All the previous radiation methods are external
    methos, i.e a radiation is provided from outside
    the body.
  • In brachytherapy small device containing
    radioactive pellets is placed in the breast
    tissue for few minutes a radiation is given
  • They ensure targeted radiation to specific cancer
    cells and removal of them.
  • Side effects of any radiation therapy may include
    irritation in breast region, redness, infection,
    fatigue and darkening of breast skin.
  • Chemotherapy
  • Chemotherapy treatment can be given before or
    after radiation. Before radiation it is given to
    shrink the cancer size so less or no radiation is
    required. And after surgery it is given to remove
    any cancer cells which are remained back. 

Treatments of breast cancer
  • Drugs used are
  • Anthracyclines, such as doxorubicin (Adriamycin)
    and epirubicin (Ellence)
  • Taxanes, such as paclitaxel (Taxol) and docetaxel
  • 5-fluorouracil (5-FU)
  • Cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan)
  • Carboplatin (Paraplatin)
  • Most often combination of two or three drugs is
  • Advanced cancer-Patients with cancer which has
    spread beyond breast and lymph nodes can be given
    advanced chemotherapy treatment. Drugs used are-
  • Docetaxel
  • Paclitaxel
  • Platinum agents (cisplatin, carboplatin)

Treatments of breast cancer
  • Vinorelbine (Navelbine)
  • Capecitabine (Xeloda)
  • Liposomal doxorubicin (Doxil)
  • Gemcitabine (Gemzar)
  • Mitoxantrone (Novantrone)
  • Ixabepilone (Ixempra)
  • Albumin-bound paclitaxel (nab-paclitaxel or
  • Eribulin (Halaven)
  • Targeted therapy-
  • Trastuzumab (Herceptin) - this monoclonal
    antibody targets and destroys cancer cells that
    are HER2-positive. (HER2 is the gene that gets
    mutated in breast cancer). Possible side effects
    may include skin rashes, headaches, and/or heart

Treatments of breast cancer
  • Lapatinib (Tykerb) - this drug targets the HER2
    protein. It is also used for the treatment of
    advanced metastatic breast cancer. Tykerb is used
    on patients who did not respond well to
    Herceptin. Side effects include painful hands,
    painful feet, skin rashes, mouth sores, extreme
    tiredness, diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.
  • Breast cancer can be prevented by preventing all
    the certain risk factors which can increase the
    rate of this particular cancer.

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