A skin rash is the second most common way of detecting breast cancer.
A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast, taken in a Doctor's office or clinic.
Women should check themselves monthly for lumps or masses in the breasts.
Breast Cancer is staged or rated from 0 to 4 based upon how advanced or invasive are the cancerous cells among the normal cells.
HER-2 is a protein found in the cancerous cell of about 20% of breast cancer. While it is a faster growing cancer, fortunately there are special types of treatment for this breast cancer. Early detection is important!
WHAT ARE RISK FACTORS FOR GETTING BREAST CANCER?
Being Female and Aging. Women in the military.
Menstruation beginning before 12 and menopause continuing until after 55.
Mother, sister or daughter who has had breast cancer.
Slight increase if you are using the pill or have in the past 10 years.
Never having had children or had first child after age 30.
Drinking 1 or more alcoholic drinks a day or contaminated drinking water can cause breast cancer
Being overweight, especially after menopause.
Having had chest radiation therapy as a child or young adult.
Having the BRAC1 or 2 genetic mutations will result in an 80% chance of getting breast cancer.
High breast tissue density, the ratio of glandular to fatty tissue in the breast.
A new lump or mass. However 80% of lumps are not cancerous.
A discharge other than breast milk.
Retraction (inward turning) of the nipple.
General swelling without a lump.
Redness in the nipple or breast skin.
WHAT IS A MAMMOGRAM?
Pictured on the left, a mammogram is an x-ray of the breast that is helpful in diagnosis and determination of cancer.
Only about 60% of those who should be screened are doing so.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD WOMEN HAVE A MAMMOGRAM?
Every 3 years until age 40, then every year.
WHAT IS A BIOPSY?
If cancer is suspected a sample of the tissue is removed by a small incision or needle to test the cells and determine whether it is healthy, or if cancerous, the type of cancer so a treatment plan can be developed. A biopsy can determine if the cancer has receptors for estrogen or progesterone which can select the type of medication given to eliminate it.
WHAT TYPES OF TREATMENT ARE THERE?
Surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, are types of treatment based upon the state of cancer and the type found.
WHAT ARE CLINICAL TRIALS?
Phase I studies the safety of the new treatment.
Phase II studies if the treatment is effective, once it has been determined to be safe. Often FDA approval is given after Phase ll.
Phase lll studies if the new treatment is better than standard treatment.
Phase lV studies ways to use the new treatment more effectively in combination with other drugs.
HOW CAN I PARTICIPATE IN A CLINICAL TRIAL?
Please follow this link for clinical trial information. Or contact University of Washington if you would like to participate in research in this location. Thanks!
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