Researchers have isolated two key areas for breast-cancer prevention: estrogen regulation and boosting immunity. Many types of breast cancer are fueled by estrogen, which makes cancer cells multiply, divide, and spread. Strengthening your immune system is one of the best defenses against cancer and other diseases.
Breast Cancer Prevention
When the cells look suspicious on a film, the radiologist makes a recommendation that a sample of tissue be removed using a tiny needle (biopsy). The tissue is fixed across a glass slide to be examined under a microscope by a pathologist who will generate a report on the tumor's structural features.
Types of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) cells:
• cribform - open spaced gaps between cells
• comedeo - containing a center of dead cells
• papillary – fingerlike
The pathologist will classify DCIS as high, intermediate, or low-grade. Some combinations are considered more aggressive.
If you treat ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) like you would invasive breast cancer, treatment can offer the promise a cure (96%–98% disease-free survival). However, women with DCIS receive the same aggressive treatment reserved for women with invasive cancer as a preventive measure, including – breast-conserving surgery (lumpectomy), breast removal (mastectomy), radiation therapy, and hormone therapy (i.e., Tamoxifen).
1 AnswerIf there is a family history or other risk factors for breast cancer, women should screen in their 40s, but should discuss their risk with their health care practitioner and might consider prevention options such as chemoprevention, surgical prophylaxis and/or lifestyle changes.
2 AnswersWomen in their 40’s need to be informed that the chance of being called back for a biopsy is fairly high while the chance of actually having a breast cancer is relatively low. On average, if 2,000 women are screened every year for 10 years, 1,100 will have a biopsy during that period, but probably only 10 cancers will be found, and screening would have saved the life of one of the ten.
1 AnswerThe answer to this question is quite complex. To get a good answer you need to talk to your physician and discuss your risk and the options you have to help alter that risk. If your doctor is unsure ask him for a referral to an oncologist that has a special interest in breast cancer.
1 AnswerRegular exercise reduces breast cancer risk by 37%. Regular exercise was associated with a reduced risk of breast cancer for 5,624 women, aged 20 to 54 years, who were studied for 13.7 years. Compared to women who didn’t exercise, subjects who engaged in “greater leisure-time activity,” lowered their chances of getting breast cancer by more than one-third.
Another study found that exercise reduces postmenopausal breast cancer risk by 29%. As with the study above, regular exercise significantly impacted cancer risk. This study was significant since it concerned 72,608 postmenopausal women, who, over five years, showed a dramatic reduction in breast cancer risk due to physical exercise.
Additional research showed that brisk walking reduces breast cancer risk by 18%. A total of 74,171 women ages 50 to 79 years enjoyed a reduced risk of breast cancer simply by brisk walking from 1 hour and 15 minutes to 2 1/2 hours per week. The study lasted 4.7 years.
Finally, a study shows that women who exercise vigorously more than five times a week have a 38% lower risk of breast cancer than women who do not exercise. This 12-year study of 90,508 women, 3,424 with breast cancer, found that five hours of vigorous exercise per week produced great benefits in prevention and survival of breast cancer.
1 AnswerNorthShore University HealthSystem answered
There are medications that can lower your risk for breast cancer, but these drugs are not for everyone. The side effects can be severe, so doctors recommend them only for women at high risk for breast cancer. This includes some women who have had breast cancer before and those who have breast cancer genes (such as BRCA1 or BRCA2). Two main drugs are used to help prevent breast cancer:
- Tamoxifen (Soltamox or Nolvadex) stops your body's estrogen - which can boost the growth of breast cancers - from attaching to breast cells. However, tamoxifen can also raise your risk for cataracts, blood clots, and uterine cancers.
- Raloxifene (Evista) works similarly and poses less risk of cataracts and blood clots than tamoxifen, but it is only for women who have gone through menopause.
5 AnswersHonor Society of Nursing (STTI) answered
You can lower your breast cancer risk by getting adequate exercise, losing excess weight, and avoiding or limiting alcohol. If you take hormone therapy for menopause symptoms, you may want to restrict the amount or duration, as it can raise your breast cancer risk.
If your doctor finds you are at high risk for breast cancer, you may want to take cancer-preventing drugs, although these can have serious side effects. If your risk is extremely high, you may decide to have your breasts removed before cancer can develop.