Research Paper On Breast Cancer
Breast cancer, as the name says it, develops from breast cells and it is the most invasive type of cancer in females. It consists in two different forms of disease, depending on the place it develops. Therefore, women can suffer from lobular carcinoma (cancer start from lobules, the glands that make milk) or from ductal carcinoma (cancer starts from ducts, the ones that carry milk to the nipple).
This affection is largely spread worldwide, as it accounts for 16% of all female cancers and 18.2% of all cancer deaths over the globe (both male and female included). What is more, in USA alone, there are 232,340 female breast cancers and 2,240 male breast cancers reported every year.
The most common symptoms of breast cancer are the following: lumps, pain, redness of breast skin, rashes around nipples, swelling, areas of thickened tissue, nipple discharges, sunken or inverted nipples, changes of forms and size in breasts and peeled, scaled or flaked breast skin. Unfortunately, these signs appear only after the disease has already installed. However, if patients get to be treated in good-time, severe complications can be avoided.
The causes of breast cancer have mostly been observed and learned though time, rather than infallibly settled. Scientists cannot tell exactly why some persons develop this affection, while others don’t. Therefore, they have come up with a list of factors that predispose women to breast cancer. These include getting older (due to menopause), genetics (family history of any type of cancer), prior cancer affections, non-cancerous lumps, dense breast tissue, high levels of estrogen exposure, obesity, height (for no scientific reasons, taller women are more exposed to breast cancer), alcohol consumption, radiation exposure, hormone replacement therapy (HRT), and certain jobs that suppose getting in contact with possible carcinogens and endocrine disruptors.
As any type of cancer, breast carcinoma can be invasive or non-invasive. In the case of invasive breast cancer, the abnormal cells are carried out of lobules and ducts, and spread all over the body organs through the bloodstream. Non-invasive cancer is less harmful, as the ill cells remain inside the lobules or ducts.
Detecting breast cancer supposes several tests. These include breast exams (for extern observable signs), x-rays (mammograms), breast ultrasounds (to differentiate between solid masses of tissues and fluid-filled cysts), biopsies (an invasive procedure that establishes if cells are cancerous) and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans. All these tests are used to determine the type of cancer, the stage of illness and its aggressiveness.
The treatment for breast cancer depends on its severity and it can consist in radiotherapy, surgery, targeted drug therapy, hormone therapy and eventually, chemotherapy.
In order to prevent the apparition of breast cancer, women must reduce at minimum the alcohol consumption, give up on smoking, exercise daily, control their body weight and choose to eat only healthy foods. Additionally, it has been proven that breast feeding reduces the chances of cancer. Postmenopausal hormone therapy must be closely monitored and women over 50 must go to periodically controls.
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