It’s a fear that every woman across the realm has faced sometime or the other. Breast cancer is responsible for an estimated 232,670 new cases in the US (2014). It is by far the most common type of cancer sighted in women and the second most common cause of death in women.

Breast cancer is often started off by the presence of an unusual lump in the breast or even the areas surrounding it. If untreated, breast cancers can grow bigger, taking over more surrounding breast tissue. A variety of diagnostic procedures are carried out to detect the presence and the stage at which the tumor is. Mammography is superior for less dense breasts and is almost invariably performed. Ultrasound is very effective especially in younger women. MRI is performed in difficult cases such as dense breast tissue, especially in young women.

The treatment in most women with breast cancer includes some type of surgery. Surgery is often needed to remove a breast tumor. Options for this include breast-conserving surgery and mastectomy. The breast can be reconstructed at the same time as surgery or later on.

One always wonders on how breast cancer can be prevented. Here are a few simple tips:

• Avoid becoming overweight.
• Eat healthy to avoid tipping the scale
• Keep physically active.
• Drink little or no alcohol
• Don’t smoke.
• If you bear children, breast-feed your babies for as long as possible.
• Avoid hormone replacement therapy
• Get regular breast cancer screenings.

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