Breast Cancer- Leading Cause of Death

Powerful Essays
Breast cancer continues to be the leading cause of death for middle aged women. In the past year, there were over 194,000 new cases of breast cancer in the U.S., approximately 20% of which did not access treatment in time despite the availability of educational resources. Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that develops in a female or male’s breast cells. Though the condition is not gender specific, it is most prevalent in middle aged to older women. It’s malignant foundation causes it to also conquer surrounding tissues if left untreated. The proximity of breasts to the heart and lungs is the predominant cause of the fatalities associated with breast cancer. It is informaly hereditary, as your risk of developing cancer is doubled by the rampancy of the genetic mutation in your family.
Most breast lumps are benign but it is in your best interest to be biopsied to prove otherwise. The female breast is made up of primarily milk producing glands known as lobules, small tubes that carry the milk to the nipple from the lobules called ducts, and stroma, the fatty connective tissue surrounding the ducts, lobules, and blood and lymphatic vessels. A significant majority of breast cancers begin in the cells that line the ducts and the lobules, while a small percentage start in other tissues.
The exact cause of breast cancer remains unknown, but scientists have identified a number of risk factors that increase someones chance of contracting the tumor. Factors such as age are out of a persons control, while risks like drinking habits can be modified as a preventative measure. The risk of developing breast cancer increases with age, as about 80% of breast cancer cases develop in women in the 50 years and older demographic. However, breast ...

... middle of paper ...

... Antoniou A, Pharoah PD, Narod S, et al. Average risks of breast and ovarian cancer associated with BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations detected in case series unselected for family history: A combined analysis of 22 studies. American Journal of Human Genetics 2003; 72(5):1117–1130.
Walsh T, Casadei S, Coats KH, et al. Spectrum of mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2, CHEK2, and TP53 in families at high risk of breast cancer. JAMA 2006; 295(12):1379–1388.
"BRCA1 & BRCA2: Cancer Risk & Genetic Testing." BRCA1 and BRCA2: Cancer Risk and Genetic Testing. National Cancer Institute, 22 Jan. 2014. Web. 16 May 2014.
"Breast Cancer." Breast Cancer. Genetics Home Reference, Aug. 2007. Web. 16 May 2014.
Slowik, Guy. "What Causes Breast Cancer?" EhealthMD. EhealthMD, 20 Mar. 2012. Web. 18 May 2014.
"What Is Breast Cancer?" Breast Cancer. American Cancer Society, 31 Jan. 2014. Web. 16 May 2014
Get Access