Things you didn’t know about Male Breast Cancer

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Nov 18, 2011

Things you didnt know about male breast cancer

The erratic growth of cancer cells in the breast tissue and their rapid multiplication is more common in women. But breast cancer occurs in men too. Men are at a much lower risk of developing breast cancer than women. This is evident by the fact that only around 1 percent of breast cancer cases are in men. The risk of this disease in men increases with advance in age, the same as women.


[Read: How to Detect Breast Cancer in Men]


Male breast cancer risk factors

  • BRCA gene mutations.
  • Klinefelter syndrome.
  • Medical history in the family of male or female breast cancer.
  • High oestrogen level which is mostly a result of frequent consumption of alcohol.
  • Tobacco addiction.
  • Sedentary lifestyle leading to obesity.

Men have some amount of sleeping breast tissue, i.e. one that cannot produce milk, concentrated mostly in the chest wall behind the nipple. These are the tissues of breast cancer which begin to grow uncontrollably creating a lot of abnormal cells.


[Read: How to Prevent Male Breast Cancer]



How to know that you have breast cancer

You need to identify certain signs and symptoms of breast cancer to be able to start treatment early. This is significant as your breast tumour is very small at the early stage and in its most treatable condition. As soon as you detect these signs, follow the recommended guidelines for screening of the disease, before the symptoms aggravate.

  • Firm non-painful mass found just below the nipple.
  • Skin changes in the area near the nipple.
  • Ulceration of the skin.
  • Redness or scaling of the nipple.
  • Dimpling or puckering.
  • The nipple turning inwards known as retraction.

The most prominent sign of breast cancer is the non-painful mass below the nipple. Other symptoms may or may not be present. In extreme cases, bloody or some sort of discharge from the nipple is also possible.

Diagnose yourself after identifying breast cancer symptoms

Male breast cancer can occur to men in of all ages. Its diagnosis involves identification of cancer cells after obtaining them through biopsy. Test for breast cancer diagnosis are

  • Mammogram.
  • Ultrasound.
  • Nipple discharge examination.
  • Breast self exam. 


[Read: Surprising Breast Cancer Facts]



Male Breast Cancer Treatment

As in any other cancer, early detection is of utmost importance for treatment. Surgical methods can help them get rid of the condition. Other than this, patients can also use

  • Radiation therapy – It is needed to clear away all the cancer cells being stuck in the chest wall, breast or the underarms after surgery. It can also be used for reducing the size of the tumour.
  • Systemic therapy – This involves injection of anti cancer drugs into the vein or orally. It is a combination of biologic therapy, chemotherapy and hormone therapy.


Read more articles on Understand Breast Cancer.



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