Written by on 10/1/2014 9:30:00 AM
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month - dedicated to increasing awareness about one of the biggest cancer threats to women. According to the American Cancer Society, in 2014 alone, 232,670 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in the United States. Additionally, 62,570 cases of carcinoma situ (a non-invasive and early form of breast cancer) will be diagnosed.
Although the disease is predominantly seen in women, men are not immune. In fact, in 2014, more than 2,300 men are expected to be newly diagnosed with the disease.
- Increasing age (risk almost doubles after age 60)
- Inherited genetic mutations (BRCA1 and/or BRCA2)
- Personal or family history of breast cancer
- Extremely high breast-tissue density as seen on mammograms
- Biopsy-confirmed atypical hyperplasia
- Having Li-Fraumeni or Cowden syndromes
- Never having children or having one's first child after the age of 30
- Being overweight or physically inactive, or becoming obese after menopause
Discovering breast cancer in its early stages greatly increases treatment options and survival rates. Regular screening mammograms and breast self-exams are extremely important. Simple lifestyle changes can also help you defend your body against breast cancer. continue reading ...
Written by on 8/14/2014 10:00:00 AM
A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine identified a new gene mutation, called PALB2, that could lead to breast cancer. Individuals with the gene had a 30 percent chance of developing breast cancer by age 70. PALB2 is now the third gene mutation to be linked to breast cancer. The first two, BRCA1 and BRCA2, were identified in the 90s.
Having a gene mutation does not mean that you will develop breast cancer, but it does increase your cancer risk. Breast surgeons and oncologists work with genetic counselors to determine the level of risk and what can be done to minimize that risk. continue reading ...
Written by on 6/19/2014 6:00:00 AM
Dr. Jianan Graybill, is a radiation oncologist and certified MD Anderson Cancer Network® physician.
What do men need to know about watchful waiting in order to catch prostate cancer before it becomes aggressive?
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in America for men (skin cancer is number one). One in six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime.
Prostate cancer typically has no symptoms or warning signs in the early stages. For men with advanced disease, these men will typically have urinary symptoms or erectile dysfunction. They may also complain of severe back pain (because the cancer has spread to the spine). continue reading ...
Written by on 3/26/2014 2:15:00 PM
An article published in The Cancer Journal for Clinicians, Wednesday, states that half of breast cancers in the U.S. might be avoided if women adopted healthier lifestyles sooner in life, and the highest-risk women took preventive drugs like tamoxifen.
The article reviews breast cancer primary prevention strategies that are applicable to all women, discusses the underutilization of chemoprevention in high-risk women, highlights the additional advances that could be made by including young women in prevention efforts.
"This article is re-stating many things we have known for some time regarding breast cancer prevention," said Dr. Robert Goulet, breast surgeon and MD Anderson certified physician with Community Physician Network. "However, I agree that we don’t place enough emphasis on preventive strategies at all ages." continue reading ...
Written by on 3/21/2014 1:00:00 PM
Laurie Plue had a history of breast and ovarian cancer in her family. Knowing that her risk for developing cancer was increased due to her family lineage, she chose to have genetic testing performed to determine whether or not she carried the cancer gene.
Here is her story.
At Community Health Network, we frequently use genetic testing and have genetic counselors to shepherd patients through the process. Our certified genetic counselor, Rebekah Krukenberg, MS, CGC, LGC, helps breast cancer patients understand and adapt to the medical, psychological and familial implications of genetic contributions to disease. For more information, call 317-621-8988.