Breast Cancer

The American Cancer Society estimates that in the United States in 1996, over 150,000 women were diagnosed with breast cancer and nearly 40,000 died from this disease. In the United States, breast cancer accounts for 29% of all cancers in women; one woman out of eight will develop breast cancer sometime during her life. Although earlier detection results in higher cure rates, breast cancer remains the leading cause of cancer death of adult women under 54 years of age and the second most common cause after age 54. Among women of all ages, breast cancer is second only to lung cancer as the leading cause of cancer deaths in women. Less than 1% of all breast cancer cases occur in men. The course of disease and its clinical management are very similar to that in women.


Risk Factors

All women are at risk of breast cancer. Women at a higher risk for developing breast cancer are those with a strong family history of breast cancer, a personal history of breast cancer, early menarche or late menopause, or a first full-pregnancy after age 30. The risk of developing breast cancer also increases with increasing age. Long-term estrogen therapy, a high fat diet, and alcohol use have been reported as possible risk factors, but the extent of their relationship to the onset of breast cancer remains unclear.


WB01542_.gif (729 bytes) Prevention

WB01542_.gif (729 bytes) Detection

WB01542_.gif (729 bytes) Treatment




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