Are You At Risk For Breast Cancer?
by Anne Childs
When it comes to being diagnosed with breast cancer, a large amount of focus is
placed on the signs and symptoms. While it is important to focus on the symptoms of
breast cancer, they are not the only things that you should keep in mind. Although an
exact cause of breast cancer has yet to be determined, there are a number of risk
factors associated with the cancer. Determining whether or not any of these risk
factors apply to you is one of the best ways, aside from regularly examining your
body, to determine whether or not you may have breast cancer or end up developing
it in the future.
You may be at a greater risk of developing breast cancer if someone else in your
immediate family has also been diagnosed with having it. It has been noted that the
BRCA1 gene and the BRCA2 gene have something to do with the development of
breast cancer. Research is still being conducted on this; however, it is looking as if
damaged cells, which may later account for breast cancer, are being passed down
through family members. Therefore, if someone in your family has been diagnosed
with breast cancer, there is a good chance that you may also develop it.
Your age may also increase your risk of developing breast cancer. While it is important
to remember that breast cancer can occur at just about any age, there are a group of
men and women who are more at risk. Those individuals are likely over the age of
fifty. That is why it is recommended that all women over the age of forty undergo a
yearly mammogram. Until that age, a self breast exam, performed by yourself or by a
healthcare professional, should be enough.
When you first started your menstrual cycle, as well as when it ended, may increase
your risk of developing breast cancer. It has been noted that those who began their
periods before the age of twelve are at an increased risk for developing breast cancer,
later on in life. The same, in a way, can be said for menopause. Recent studies have
shown that the later a woman begins menopause, the more at risk she is for
developing breast cancer. Menopause should begin around the age of fifty-five. If it
starts to occur any later, you will want to be on the lookout for the signs and
symptoms of breast cancer.
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and birth control pills have been known to
increase a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer. These risk factors are not as
high as the above mentioned risk factors, but a connection between breast cancer,
hormone replacement therapy, as well as birth control pills has been established.
Therefore, if you are currently on birth control pills or are undergoing hormone
replacement therapy, it may be a good idea to speak to a healthcare professional.
Your OBGYN or primary care physician should be more than willing to give you inside
and updated information on the connection between breast cancer and these two
widely used medications.
In addition to hormone replacement therapy, birth control pills, a family history, late
menopause, early menstrual periods, and age, there are a number of other risk
factors that have been connected to breast cancer. These additional risk factors
include, are not limited to, radiation, and excessive alcohol consumption. Now that
you know whether or not you are at an increased risk of developing breast cancer,
you may be able to better prepare yourself for what you may find, now or in the
If, at any point, you notice a lump in your breast or have unexplained breast pain, you
are advised to seek medical assistance immediately. The sooner breast cancer is
detected, the sooner it can be treated and gone from your life, hopefully forever.
About The Author
Anne Childs is a contributor to who has also conducted
many seminars to raise awareness on , and other conditions which women are most susceptible to.
Each year, millions of women
learn that they have developed
breast cancer. Despite most
commonly being found in
women, breast cancer can also
be diagnosed in men. That is why
breast cancer is often considered
one of the most common types
of all diagnosable cancers.
Fortunately, you if you are
diagnosed as having cancer,
there are a number of treatment
options that may help you
become cancer free. However,
before that can occur, you need
to be diagnosed as having breast
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