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Breast Cancer: Symptoms, Treatment, Prevention

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women, accounting for 14% of cancers in Indian women. An Indian woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every four minutes, according to reports. Breast cancer is becoming more common in both rural and urban India. Breast Cancer data from 2018 revealed 1,62,468 new cases and 87,090 reported deaths.

Cancer survival becomes increasingly difficult as it progresses, and more than half of Indian women have stage 3 or 4 breast cancer. Post-cancer survival for Indian women was reported to be 60%, compared to 80% in the United States.

Awareness is the Prevention

Women can self-diagnose their condition and detect lumps or masses that indicate malignant outgrowths. Women in India have a low breast cancer survival rate due to a lack of knowledge and inadequate early screening and diagnostic rates.

The survival rates of breast cancer in India are low because the detection takes place late. The only way to change these numbers is by increasing awareness. Breast cancer is a treatable disease and chances of survival are higher if it’s detected in time. The only way to do so is by being aware of how it can be detected.

What Are the Symptoms of Breast Cancer?

  • New lump in the breast or underarm (armpit).
  • Thickening or swelling of part of the breast.
  • Irritation or dimpling of breast skin.
  • Redness or flaky skin in the nipple area or the breast.
  • Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area.

Types of treatments

The common types of treatments used for early-stage and locally advanced breast cancer are described below. Your care plan also includes treatment for symptoms and side effects, which is an important part of cancer care.

  • Surgery
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Hormonal therapy
  • Targeted therapy
  • Immunotherapy
  • Neoadjuvant systemic therapy for non-metastatic breast cancer
  • Systemic therapy concerns for people age 65 or older
  • Physical, emotional, and social effects of cancer
  • Recurrent breast cancer

Chemotherapy is given before surgery:  Treatment for people who have received chemotherapy before surgery depends on whether the chemotherapy has destroyed the cancer in the lymph nodes.

If there was no evidence of cancer in the lymph nodes either before or after chemotherapy, radiation therapy to the lymph node area is not recommended.

If there was evidence of cancer in the lymph nodes before chemotherapy and there is no longer evidence of cancer in the lymph nodes after chemotherapy, radiation therapy to the lymph node area is recommended.

If there is evidence of cancer in the lymph nodes after chemotherapy, then both an axillary lymph node dissection and radiation therapy to the lymph node area are recommended.

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