2. BREAST CANCER
Even after many years and billions of dollars in
research we still don’t know what causes cancer but
we do know what we can do to see if we are at risk
for it and what to do to try and reduce our risks, the
part our genes play in it, and the treatment and early
detection of this disease.
Breast cancer is a cancer that starts in the tissues of
the breast and is classified in 2 types- Ductal- this is
in the ducts of the breasts , the tubes that supply
milk, the most common. Second Lobular- this starts
in the tubes that produce the milk. Rare cases can
start in other areas of the breast as well.
3. CAUSES AND RISKS FACTORS
DIET and EXERCISE :
a) Physical Activity- make sure you exercise daily
, at least 45-60min, 5x week. This is shown to
reduce breast cancer risk.
b) Proper Nutrition- eat a healthy diet rich in fruits
and vegetables, high in fiber, low in fat and
limit processed and red meats in your diet.
c) Weight Management- keep your weight in a
manageable range and avoid obesity
4. ALCOHOL AND TOBACCO USE AND AGE
A) Women should avoid consuming alcoholic
drinks of more than 2 daily
B) Use of tobacco should be avoided as this has
been shown to increase the risks of breast
cancer as well as other cancers.
C) Age- Risks increase with age- 2 out of 3 breast
cancers are found in woman 55 or older.
D) Being a woman – Just being a woman is the
biggest risk factor for developing breast
5. DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT
Early detection is key in the treatment and diagnosis
of breast cancer and the first is to be proactive .
A) Mammograms – Should be done every year after a
woman turns 40
B) Woman need to do SBE – self breast exams
monthly and call the doctor if they notice any
change in the breast shape, color or if any
discharge is noted from the breast
C) Breast biopsy to evaluate a lump to see if it is
D) Breast cancer is considered either invasive ,
meaning it has spread to other tissues or non
invasive ( in situ) that it is localized to specific
tissue or lump.
6. TREATMENT OPTIONS
Treatment options vary depending on the stage and type of
A) Local Therapy – Therapy intended to treat a tumor at the
site without affecting the rest of the body, ex; surgery,
lumpectomy or mastectomy- (removal of the breast
B) Systemic Therapy – This therapy refers to drugs given by
mouth or directly into the bloodstream to reach cancer
cells in the body. Chemotherapy, hormone therapy and
targeted therapy are these types.
C) Adjuvant Therapy- Systemic therapy given after surgery to
make sure the cancer is gone and to kill hidden cells
D) Neoadjuvant Therapy – Chemo therapy or hormone therapy
to shrink tumors before surgery is done.
7. CONTROLLABLE AND UNCONTROLLABLE RISK FACTORS
A) Genetics and family history have an impact on your risk for
getting breast cancer. About 5-10% are from a genetic
defect that is inherited from a parent called “ mutations”,
the BRCA 1 and the BRCA 2 genes and can make your risk
about 80% of developing breast cancer.
B) Having a first degree relative ( mother, sister, or daughter)
with breast cancer about doubles a woman's risk.
C) Woman with denser breasts have a higher risks due to the
density of the tissue, this makes it more difficult to spot
D) Pregnancy history- woman who haven't had a child or did
so after age 30 have a higher risk of breast cancer.
E) Woman using hormone replacement therapy are at greater
risk for developing breast cancer
8. COMPLIMENTARY AND ALTERNATIVE OPTIONS
The goal of complimentary and alternative treatments for breast
cancer is to balance the whole person – physically, mentally,
and emotionally while the conventional medicine does its work.
For many this helps to relieve symptoms, ease treatment side
effects and improve the quality of life.
Some forms of complimentary treatments are ; Acupuncture,
Aromatherapy, Massage, Meditation. Yoga, Tai Chi Hypnosis,
Music therapy just to name a few.
When making a decision about the type of treatment a person
chooses they should make sure to research all options as well
as combining traditional and complimentary and alternative
treatments as the benefits of doing this can be very beneficial.
The most important thing to remember is that taking care of
your body and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important in
preventing this disease and detecting it early on.
9. THE ROLE YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM PLAYS
Breast cancer cells start out as normal cells, that begin to grow
out of control because of an abnormal gene. The immune
system plays a major role in limiting the development of
these abnormalities, often before the cancer has a chance to
grow. An alert immune system takes them out and protects
us by not allowing the cancer to get beyond the very earliest
When the cells do over take the immune system it then
becomes cancer and the immune system then needs help to
fight it and recover from it, many times with the help of
medicines that boost the immune system such as ; antibody
medications, immune growth factors – these medicines
stimulate production of new immune cells, vaccines- these
stimulate your immune system to fight back, give it a wake
10. RELIABLE COMMUNITY AND WEB SUPPORT
A person should check in there local town or city
for support groups offered through churches,
hospitals and other cancer support groups
Web support groups are also available for those
with breast cancer to chat with about different
treatments and support options available some
Breastcancer.org , American Cancer Society. Org ,
American Botanical Council , a site that offers
current herbal and nutritional facts.