Male Breast Cancer

Can men get breast cancer? You bet they can! According to multiple studies, it is most common in men between the ages of 60 and 70 but not not uncommon to diagnose in men in their 20’s and 30’s. 

While fewer men statistically develop breast cancer, the lack of awareness of the condition often leads to their cancer being identified much later. The earlier the cancer is detected, the better the projected outcome.

What are the signs and sympotoms of male breast cancer?

  • Usually a painless lump 
  • Skin dimpling or puckering
  • Development of a new retraction or indentation of the nipple
  • Changes in the nipple or breast skin, such as scaling or redness
  • Nipple discharge

According to Wendi Pedicone’s book, Hanging Out With Lab Coats, about 1500 new cases of male breast cancer are identified each year. Typically, 1 in 6 cases of male breast cancer are inherited. If there is a family member who has tested genetically positive for BRCA1 or BRCA2 then it is a good idea to be hyper vigilant of body changes at an early age.

 Treatment for male breast cancer is very similar to that of women’s breast cancer. Surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy are usually followed by a course of hormone or herceptin therapy. Early detection is the key to increasing your odds for survival. Get to know your body and recognize changes so you can discuss them promptly with your physician.

To reduce your chances of developing this and other forms of cancer maintain a healthy body weight, minimize your alcohol intake, and choose a healthy active life style. 

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