Breast Cancer Awareness ribbon on pink flowers with soft backgroundToday, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American women. In light of that startling statistic, our passionate healthcare experts offer women (and men) a variety of breast cancer prevention services, including education and screenings, as well as diagnosis, treatment, follow-up and support.

What is Breast Cancer?
Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to grow out of control. These cells usually form a tumor that can often be seen on an x-ray or felt as a lump. The tumor is malignant (cancer) if the cells can grow into (invade) surrounding tissues or spread (metastasize) to distant areas of the body.

Where does Breast Cancer start?
Breast cancers can start from different parts of the breast. Most breast cancers begin in the ducts that carry milk to the nipple (ductal cancers). Some start in the glands that make breast milk (lobular cancers).

Although many types of breast cancer can cause a lump in the breast, not all do. Many breast cancers are found on screening mammograms which can detect cancers at an earlier stage, often before they can be felt, and before symptoms develop. There are other symptoms of breast cancer you should watch for and report to a health care provider.

It’s also important to understand that most breast lumps are benign and not cancer (malignant). Non-cancerous breast tumors are abnormal growths, but they do not spread outside of the breast and they are not life threatening. But some benign breast lumps can increase a woman’s risk of getting breast cancer. Any breast lump or change needs to be checked by a health care professional to determine if it is benign or malignant (cancer) and if it might affect your future cancer risk. (American Cancer Society What is Breast Cancer?).

Today, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American women. In light of that startling statistic, our passionate healthcare experts offer women (and men) a variety of breast cancer prevention services, including education and screenings, as well as diagnosis, treatment, follow-up and support.

Mammography screening remains the best available method for detecting breast cancer in its early stages. We suggest that women:

• Discuss breast health with their primary care physician or specialist
• Undergo regular mammography screenings, beginning at age 40 to 45
• Be familiar with how their breasts normally look and feel and report any changes to their health care provider immediately.

To learn more about our breast health services, including mammograms, breast biopsies, how to perform breast self-exams, and other topics, please call (307) 996-4673.