Breast cancer is the most common cancer among menopausal women. There are many types of breast cancer that differ in their capability of spreading (metastasizing) to other body tissues.The causes of breast cancer are not yet fully known although a number of risk factors have been identified.There are many different types of breast cancer.Breast cancer is diagnosed with physician and self-examination of the breasts, mammography, ultrasound testing, and biopsy.Treatment of breast cancer depends on the type of cancer and its stage (the extent of spread in the body).
According to the American Cancer society (USA Stats):
- Over 200,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer are diagnosed each year.
- Nearly 40,000 women are expected to die of breast cancer in 2012.
- There are over 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in the United States.
- The recommendations regarding frequency and age when women should get screening mammography differ slightly between different organizations and task forces.
- Between 40 and 50 years of age, mammograms are recommended every 1 to 2 years (National Cancer Institute). After 50 years of age, yearly mammograms are recommended (American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology).
- You should discuss with your health care professional the screening frequency that he or she recommends and what guidelines they follow.
- Patients with a family history or specific risk factors might have a different screening schedule including starting screening mammograms at an earlier age.
What is breast cancer?
Breast cancer is a malignant tumor (a collection of cancer cells) arising from the cells of the breast. Although breast cancer predominantly occurs in women it can also affect men.