Breast cancer continues to be a serious condition that affects 1 in 12 women at some point in their life. Fortunately, it is no longer always life threatening and doesn’t typically permanently scar individuals.
Breast cancer, like all other cancers, is extremely mysterious. Breast cancer is an active research area and many questions remain unanswered. The underlying causes of breast cancer remain unknown in most cases, but the way by which it spreads and acts is better known today.
The risks of breast cancer – who gets it, the pros and cons of different treatments, survival rates and more – are also much better quantified.
While many claims are overblown, the effects of diet are becoming clearer. Many questions remain, but low estrogen producing diets and lifestyles are strongly indicated as beneficial. Low fat diets contribute to that as does regular exercise.
Early detection and diagnosis has reached a point in technological advancement where it only takes a clump of 50 cancer cells to be identified as a cancerous tumor. Chemical tests for early detection are becoming cheaper and much more sophisticated. Treatments now range from the more traditional such as lumpectomy or mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation to even more advanced hormone treatments.
Even with all the innovation, though, self-examination remains one of the best practices. It is in the individual’s control and makes possible ferreting out anything requiring further investigation by more advanced methods. Mammograms remain a low cost, low risk and low discomfort method of detecting tumors.
Recovery is typically faster with fewer recurrences being seen thanks to more precise diagnosis and treatment. Digital mammography is computer assisted and makes the review of test results much more accurate than in the past.
Though it is tragic, when a woman or man contracts breast cancer that requires surgery improved reconstruction techniques make it a lot less scary. The FDA has recently removed silicon implants from the forbidden list. Implants and plastic surgery are becoming less dangerous. Patients now are home from the hospital the same day they have surgery.
It is normal in today’s world for almost 100% of the individuals who receive early diagnosis and treatment (treatment during stage 0 or stage I) to live longer than five years. Most of these individuals never have any recurrence at all and aren’t bothered by their breast cancer for the rest of their life.
This disease was once life threatening and typically terminal. Though it hasn’t been reduced to nothing more than an annoyance yet it is still much less life threatening. Typically following treatment individuals can enjoy a cancer free life.