Senior Project Research Paper
Beating the Odds
What is Breast Cancer? What is the Cause of it?
Breast cancer is cancer cells that develop in the breast of a woman. The most common type of breast cancer is ductal carcinoma in situ. The cancer cells develop in the milk ducts of the breast. Doctors and researchers do not exactly know the cause of cancer. All they know is that it usually occurs when a cell’s DNA is damaged. When cells in the breast start to develop abnormally they begin to develop quicker than the normal cells. They also keep multiplying, causing them to metastasize throughout the breast to the persons lymph nodes and sometimes other parts of the body. Sometimes breast cancer occurs in the lobules, but most of the time it starts in the invasive ductal carcinoma. Breast cancer can occur in males and females, but it is more common in females. Cancer.gov states that in 2014 there was an estimate of 232,670 new cases of breast cancer for women and 2,360 men. The estimate deaths were 40,000 for women and 430 for men.
What are the Risk Factors?
Risk factors are elements that may lead to an increase in someone being more likely to develop something. In this case, it would be breast cancer. First, of course, would be just being a woman. Men develop breast cancer also, but it’s more predominant in women. Age is also a factor. The older someone is may increase their risk of developing it. Genetics are also a risk factor. Cancer.org says, About 5% to 10% of breast cancer cases are caused by mutations. Having a family history of cancer increases someone's chances of getting it, although most of the time, people who have it, had no family history. Having being exposed to radiation, being obese, starting your menstrual cycle before the age of 12, beginning menopause late, having a child when you’re older, never have being pregnant, taking postmenopausal hormone therapy medication, and drinking alcohol are also immense factors that lead to an increase in someone being diagnosed with breast cancer. Although someone might have some of these risk factors, does not mean they will develop breast cancer. 60-70% of people who develop breast cancer, had no risk factors. Even though one might or might not have any of these risk factors, does not mean that they should take less care of themselves or be oblivious to cancer.
What are the Signs and Symptoms?
Signs and symptoms to look out for are changes in the shape or size of the breast, change in the skin over the breast or nipple, such as scaling or flaking, emit of blood from the nipple, or even a lump in the breast. Although someone may experience some of these changes, does not mean that, without question, they have breast cancer. These are just important factors to keep in mind and look out for. Women should check themselves out monthly by doing breast self exams.The National breast cancer foundation says, “Forty percent of diagnosed breast cancers are detected by women who...