The number of patients with oncological diseases is steadily increasing every year, according to estimates of the World Health Organization, the number of cancer patients has increased by more than a quarter over the past ten years.
What is breast cancer?
Breast oncology is most common in elderly women, 77% of all cases occur in patients over 50 years old, the peak incidence is 60-65 years. Young girls under 30 suffer very rarely, they account for 0.3% of all cases. Thus, the risk of developing pathology increases proportionally with age. All over the world, at least 1.3 million women hear the diagnosis of breast cancer every year, about 500 thousand people die because of this disease.
There are more than 20 types of malignant tumors of the mammary glands (ductal carcinoma, lobular carcinoma, infiltrating ductal carcinoma, infiltrating lobular carcinoma, medullary carcinoma, cancer with signs of inflammation, etc.). All of them are dangerous and require urgent treatment.
The method of treatment for breast cancer depends on the stage of the disease at which the disease is detected. In total there are four stages of the disease, each is characterized by certain symptoms and manifestations, their intensity increases with the progression of oncology.
- Stage 1 Malignant neoplasms of small size, less than 2 centimeters, high survival rate: five-year survival rate up to 95%, ten-year-old up to 80%.
- Stage 2 Malignant neoplasms increased to 5 cm, the tumor can be spread to neighboring lymph nodes, survival statistics: five-year survival rate of about 50-80%, ten-year-old - 40-60%.
- Stage 3 At this stage of cancer, the tumor significantly increases in size, neighboring lymph nodes and surrounding tissues are affected, the survival rate is low: five-year-old - no more than 50%, ten-year-old - up to 30%.
- Stage 4 Malignant neoplasms have arbitrary sizes, metastasis is common in a large number, the survival rate is very low: the five-year survival rate is no more than 10%, the 10-year-old is up to 5%.
Causes and symptoms of breast cancer
The reasons. Breast cancer, like most other cancers, has no exact causes, the mechanisms of occurrence, as well as factors contributing to the growth of tumors, are still unknown. However, there is a theory that breast cancer is directly related to hormonal imbalances, primarily with elevated estrogen levels. If to adhere to this theory, then the risk group includes:
- Pregnant women and those who voluntarily gave up breastfeeding
- Women who undergo repeated abortions
- Women who have taken hormonal contraceptives for a long time
- Women with early menstruation (up to 13 years) and late menopause (over 50 years)
- The risk group also includes women who have been diagnosed with this affliction in the family, close relatives. It is worth noting that in the overall picture of the incidence, genetically caused cancer accounts for a small percentage of patients.
Symptoms Often, people go to doctors when something starts to bother and hurt, but in the case of a malignant tumor of the breast, it is not. Pain is not at all a symptom of the disease, with the exception of rare cases of a certain type of breast oncology. In the early stages, tumors develop almost asymptomatically.
There are several major signs of breast cancer. In the first place - it is a tumor in the mammary glands. If, during self-examination, a woman finds a hard-to-touch seal, with uneven contours, then this is the most important symptom requiring immediate attention to specialists. If the seal is round and painful, then, as a rule, it has nothing to do with cancer and is a benign formation, but, of course, it will also be necessary to consult a doctor.
Also a symptom of cancer is a change in the appearance of the skin over the alleged malignant tumor. In this place, the skin may be pulled in, in wrinkles or folds. Here are a few more symptoms that indicate the possible development of malignant tumors: enlarged, painless lymph nodes; non-lactating pathological discharge from the nipples (with pus or blood).