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Top Tips to Decrease Your Breast Cancer Risk

Breast cancer is probably one of the most feared diagnosis a woman can get. The mere mention of it conjures up images of death, despair, or at best, disfigurement.

According to, one in eight women will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime, and nearly 40,000 women lose their lives to the disease each year.

With such odds stacked against you, what, if anything, can you do to prevent becoming a statistic? In truth, there are many measures you can take—each of which will help decrease your risk.

It’s important to realize that less than 10 percent of all breast cancer cases are thought to be related to genetic risk factors. The remainder—90 percent—appear to be triggered by environmental factors.


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Posted: October 7, 2014 ; By: Dr. Mercola


Metastatic breast cancer – One of the many types of Breast Cancer

Metastatic breast cancer occurs when cancer cells spread to another part of the body. Breast cancer can be metastatic at the time of diagnosis, or following treatment. Cancer cells can travel through the bloodstream and spread to other organs and parts of the body.

The most common sites of metastases are the breast or area where the breast used to be, the chest wall, the lymph nodes, the bones, the lungs or around the lungs, the liver or the brain. If you have been treated for breast cancer and now have cancer cells in any of these areas, it is most likely breast cancer that has spread.

Metastatic breast cancer is different to recurrent breast cancer. Recurrent breast cancer is cancer that returns to the same part of the same breast after treatment, rather than to other parts of the body. When cancer develops in the second breast, it is almost always a new cancer, not a recurrence.

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Posted September 23, 2014; Source: Cancer Treatment Centers of America





Breast cancer specialist reports advance in treatment of triple-negative breast cancer

William M. Sikov, a medical oncologist in the Breast Health Center and associate director for clinical research in the Program in Women’s Oncology at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, served as study chair and lead author for a recently-published major national study that could lead to improvements in outcomes for women with triple-negative breast cancer, an aggressive form of the disease that disproportionately affects younger women.

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Posted September 16, 2014   Source: Women & Infants Hospital

FDA Approves First ‘Pre-Surgical’ Drug for Breast Cancer

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday approved the first drug to be used before the surgical treatment of breast cancer.

Perjeta (pertuzumab), which was granted accelerated approval by the FDA, is already used to treat breast cancer in its advanced stages. This is the first time that women with early-stage HER2-positive breast cancers — a typically aggressive form of tumor — will have the chance to start treatment with something other than surgery, the agency said.

The hope is that pre-surgical treatment could result in less invasive surgeries and improved survival rates. Typically, surgery has been the first step in breast cancer treatment.

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                                                 Published by (HealthDay News)

Posted September 8, 2014

Top tips for Breast Cancer prevention

1. Avoid becoming overweight. Obesity raises the risk of breast cancer after menopause, the time of life when breast cancer most often occurs. Avoid gaining weight over time, and try to maintain a body-mass index under 25 (calculators can be found online).

2. Eat healthy to avoid tipping the scale. Embrace a diet high in vegetables and fruit and low in sugared drinks, refined carbohydrates and fatty foods. Eat lean protein such as fish or chicken breast and eat red meat in moderation, if at all. Eat whole grains. Choose vegetable oils over animal fats.

3. Keep physically active. Research suggests that increased physical activity, even when begun later in life, reduces overall breast-cancer risk by about 10 percent to 30 percent. All it takes is moderate exercise like a 30-minute walk five days a week to get this protective effect.

4. Drink little or no alcohol. Alcohol use is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. Women should limit intake to no more than one drink per day, regardless of the type of alcohol.

Dr. Anne McTiernan, Director of the Prevention Center

5. Don’t smoke. Research suggests that long-term smoking is associated with increased risk of breast cancer in some women. Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

6. If you bear children, breast-feed your babies for as long as possible. Women who breast-feed their babies for at least a year in total have a reduced risk of developing breast cancer later.

7. Avoid hormone replacement therapy. Menopausal hormone therapy increases risk for breast cancer. If you must take hormones to manage menopausal symptoms, avoid those that contain progesterone and limit their use to less than three years. “Bioidentical hormones” and hormonal creams and gels are no safer than prescription hormones and should also be avoided.

8. Get regular breast cancer screenings. Follow your doctor or health care provider’s recommendations to decide what type of screening you need and how often you need it.

If you are at high risk for breast cancer, such as having a particular gene like a BRCA gene, or have a strong family history or have had high-risk benign breast disease in the past, talk with your doctor about other options for you which might include:

A. Extra screenings. For some women, MRI or ultrasound screenings can add valuable information to regular mammogram screening.

B. Estrogen-blocking drugs. Women with a family history of breast cancer or who are over age 60 should talk to their doctor about the pros and cons of estrogen-blocking drugs such as tamoxifen, raloxifene, and aromatase inhibitors.

C. Prophylactic surgery to remove breasts and/or ovaries. Women who have had both breasts surgically removed reduce their risk of breast cancer by over 90 percent. Women who have had both ovaries removed have about half the risk of developing breast cancer as women with intact ovaries. Clearly these options are most appropriate for women at very high risk.

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Posted September 4, 2014

Women Older Than 75 Get Benefits From Mammograms

Breast cancer screening in older women has been a much discussed topic in the past few years. In 2009, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommended that mammograms shouldn’t be encouraged in women ages 75 and older because they might not benefit from the screenings. The USPSTF made this recommendation because no research had shown that these women would benefit from regular mammograms. The USPSTF also recommended that breast cancer screening should start at age 50 instead of 40 and that mammograms should be done every other year instead of every year.

Several medical organizations and advocacy groups, including the American Cancer Society and, didn’t agree with the USPSTF conclusions and ignored the recommendations. The recommendations were very controversial and were not widely adopted by doctors. bpic

A study has found that mammography finds breast cancer at earlier stages in older women. Early-stage breast cancer is usually easier to treat than advanced-stage cancer. The study also found that because breast cancers were detected at earlier stages, the number of more advanced-stage cancer went down in older women.

The study was published online on Aug. 5, 2014 by the journal Radiology. Read the abstract of “Improved Prognosis of Women Aged 75 and Older With Mammography-detected Breast Cancer.”


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Posted August 31, 2014

Breast Cancer Screening: Making Sense of the Conflicting Guidelines

Patrick Dillon, MD

Screening Mammography

Breast Cancer Incidence by Age

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Posted August 14, 2014



Genetic Testing: Families with Breast Cancer

Medical Author: Melissa Conrad Stoppler, MD

Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

What are the facts about families that have multiple members with breast cancer?

Overall, inherited breast cancer disorders account for a small minority of breast cancers. Genes are the “messages” in each cell of the body that determine the ultimate design of our bodies. Genes can be damaged by the environment. Additionally, people can be born with defects in the genes that remove the body’s defenses against cancers. Only in about 10% of all breast cancer cases is there actually an inherited genetic defect that can be tested. In fact, most cases of breast cancer occur in women who do not have a family history of breast cancer. A complex interplay between environmental and genetic factors affects the development of breast cancer, and all the key factors have not yet been identified.

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Posted August 6, 2014

Male Breast Cancer

Medical Author: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD 

Medical Editor: Dennis Lee, MD 

Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

How common is male breast cancer?Breast Cancer Does Not Know Gender

Male breast cancer is a rare condition, accounting for only about 1% of all breast cancers. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2013, about 2,240 new cases of breast cancer in men would be diagnosed and that breast cancer would cause approximately 410 deaths in men (in comparison, almost 40,000 women die of breast cancer each year). Breast cancer is 100 times more common in women than in men. Most cases of male breast cancer are detected in men between the ages of 60 and 70, although the condition can develop in men of any age. A man’s lifetime risk of developing breast cancer is about 1/10 of 1%, or one in 1,000.

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Posted August 5, 2014


Dr and Patient
Breast Cancer Disparities

Office of the Associate Director for Communication, Digital Media Branch, Division of Public Affairs

Differences in Screening, Follow-Up, and Treatment


Screening means looking for cancer before symptoms appear. Mammograms are the best way to find breast cancer. A mammogram is an X-ray picture of the breast. Black and white women get mammograms at about the same rate. But more black women have breast cancer that has spread beyond the breast compared with white women when the cancer is found.


When a mammogram shows something is not normal, follow-up tests are needed to see if it is cancer. Compared with white women, more black women take longer to complete these tests after finding out they have a mammogram that is not normal. Waiting longer for follow-up care may lead to cancers that are larger and harder to treat.


After cancer is found, treatment should start as soon as possible. Fewer black women start treatment in a timely way compared with white women. Also, fewer black women get the surgery, radiation, and hormone treatments they need compared with white women.

Ways to Lower Your Risk From Breast Cancer

Get mammograms regularly

If you are 50 to 74 years old, be sure to have a screening mammogram every two years. If you are 40–49 years old, talk to your doctor about when and how often you should have a screening mammogram.

Know your family history of breast cancer

If you have a parent, sibling, or child with breast cancer, ask your doctor how you can lower your risk.

Learn about hormone replacement therapy

Some women use hormone replacement therapy to treat the symptoms of menopause. Ask your doctor about the risks and benefits and find out if hormone replacement therapy is right for you. …
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Posted August 4, 2014

Breast Cancer Highlighted

Breast Cancer Basics — More Screening, Better Treatments Aid Women in Fight Against Breast Cancer

MMS Physician Focus
By Carol Mei, M.D.

Survival Rates

Breast cancer survivors number about 2.5 million in the United States today. The five-year survival for breast cancer patients has improved from 63 percent in the early 1960s to 89 percent today [2009], so there’s much reason for hope in the war against breast cancer. Women can make a difference by playing an active role in the prevention, detection, and management of their cancer. They should adopt healthy lifestyles, abide by the recommended screening guidelines, and seek support services during and after treatment, as needed. …

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Posted August 4, 2014

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