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Breast cancer is a form of cancer which develops from the breast tissue. Breast cancer is indicated by signs such as a lump in the breast, changes in breast shape, fluid flowing from the nipple, dimpling of skin, or the development of red scaly patches. Breast cancer is a fatal form of cancer in women and immediate diagnosis is required on observing the symptoms.
Diagnosis of breast cancer
Other than the regular breast screening, the diagnosis of breast cancer involves the following steps and methods:
- Seeing your general practitioner (GP): It is very important to visit your GP soon after noticing the symptoms of breast cancer. Your GP will examine you properly and in case your symptoms need more assessment, he/she will refer you to a breast cancer clinic.
- Mammogram and breast ultrasound: You will be required to have a mammogram, as recommended by a specialist breast unit. This is an X-ray of the breasts. An ultrasound scan may also be required. Breast ultrasound should be undertaken only if you are less than 35 years of age. This is because, young women have denser breasts and a mammogram is not as effective as ultrasound in the diagnosis of breast cancer. In ultrasound, high frequency sound waves are used for obtaining an image of your breasts. It is observed to notice any abnormality or lumps. A breast ultrasound is also important for determining whether a lump is solid or contains liquid.
- Biopsy: In this diagnosis process, a sample of the tissue cells is taken from the breasts and tested under a microscope to find out if it is cancerous. A scan and needle test for the lymph nodes present in your armpit is also done to check whether they have also been affected. A biopsy is undertaken in several ways, depending upon the condition and severity. A needle aspiration biopsy is used for testing a sample of your breast cells without the removal of the tissues. This is the most common form of biopsy and it is also used for draining a small fluid-filled lump or benign cyst. During the process, you will be given a local anesthetic. Usually, a needle biopsy is carried out guided by an X-ray, ultrasound and an MRI scan as well. This helps in distinguishing it from non-invasive changes such as ductal carcinoma in situ.
Another form of biopsy used for the diagnosis of breast cancer is called vacuum assisted biopsy or mammotome biopsy. In this process, a needle gets attached to a suction tube, which helps in obtaining the sample and for clearing the bleeding. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
One of the things that Shannen Doherty and Rita Wilson, the wife of Tom Hanks, have in common, apart from their fame is that both were affected by breast cancer. No matter how normal a person may seem, breast cancer can strike anyone. In fact, it usually strikes one in eight women. So, it makes good sense to know what it can appear as!
Breast cancer(स्तन कैंसर) makes up a rather big amount of the general cancer cases as 15% of the cancer cases which are reported on a yearly basis are usually breast cancer cases. That being said, there are quite a few things which can be done in order to reduce a person’s risk to breast cancer.
Prevention is Prudent-
Get Fit: The first thing which should be done is that a reasonable level of fitness should be maintained. Many studies have found that if a person is significantly heavier than her recommended weight, she is at a far great risk to develop all sorts of cancer and breast cancer, in particular, than a person who is able to keep her weight in check. The difference in cancer risk rates is about 40%. This is because a greater amount of fat leads to more estrogen being produced, which increases the risk of breast cancer.
Quit Smoking: While most people associate smoking as something which increases the risk of cancer to the lungs and are not aware that it increases the risk of breast cancer, too. So, the best solution is to kick the habit!
Get Off the Pill: Once a woman crosses past her mid-thirties, she should try to avoid relying on birth control pills to reduce the risk of pregnancy. This is because these pills have an effect which increases the risk of breast cancer, which heightens as a woman gets older. As long as the woman cuts out the use of the pill, the risk quickly gets cut, as well.
Get Regular Check Ups: While screening for breast cancer by making use of mammograms does not cut the risk of it, the screening helps detect breast cancer early if it does exist. As a result, a woman has a much better chance of fighting breast cancer. So, a woman who is past the age of forty should try to have a mammogram on an annual basis with the frequency of the same increasing as she gets older. However, it is to be kept in mind that going for a mammogram too often is also not a good idea as the tests themselves pose risks of DNA changes.
Women all around the world are susceptible to breast cancer. While there isn’t a 100% chance of avoiding it, taking care of yourself and leading a fit and active lifestyle can significantly cut down your risk of contracting this condition. Remember, your health is in your hands, so the earlier you start, the better! If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a gynaecologist.
The very term 'breast cancer' can send shivers down a woman's spine. The associated pain, agony, sufferings are enough to deter a person. The effectiveness of the treatment depends on the stage in which the condition is detected. Unfortunately, many women neglect and overlook the early signs, thereby delaying the treatment.
Self-awareness is vital for prevention, early detection and treatment of breast cancer. Treatment and prevention can only work when a person is alert and agile. If you notice any unusual symptoms, waste no time and consult an experienced physician at the earliest. However, prevention is always better than a cure. A few healthy habits, if practiced diligently, can go a long way to prevent and reduce the incidences of breast cancer.
- A healthy body weight: Overweight and obese women are at a greater risk of suffering from breast cancer. The key to this problem is as simple as shedding off the extra kilos. Research suggests that incidences of breast cancer are slightly lower in women who maintain body weight within healthy limits. Enrich your diet with fruits and vegetables. Drink water and other healthy fluids (coconut water, fresh fruit juice,) at regular intervals.
- Breastfeed for a healthy breast: Breastfeeding is important for the health of both the baby and the mother. While babies get the necessary nourishment, women who are into breastfeeding are less likely to suffer from breast cancer. Thus, all healthy lactating mothers should breastfeed their babies.
- Keep the vices at bay: Severe smoking and alcohol consumption can harm your body beyond imagination, with breast cancer being one the many harmful side effects. Drinking within limits (1 drink or even less per day) is still acceptable, but anything in excess is sure to spell doom.
- Some of the imaging and diagnostic tests can be harmful to your body: Repeated exposure to the radiations from CT-scan can put a woman at an increased risk of developing breast cancer. Limiting the exposure to such radiations may help to check the incidences of breast cancer.
- Physically active and agile: Lack of physical exercise and an unhealthy lifestyle can wreak havoc with health complications as serious as breast cancer. It is important to keep your body physically active. Light to moderate exercise (for 30 minutes), jogging, cycling, swimming and other physical activities can work wonders for your body. Avoid stress and anxiety. Proper rest and a sound sleep are equally important.
Various research and studies suggest that women who are into hormone therapy are more susceptible to breast cancer. Such patients are often advised to avoid and replace hormone therapy with alternative treatments. However under extreme conditions (where the alternative treatments fail to produce the desired result), limiting the duration as well as the dosage of the hormone therapy may be helpful. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an Oncologist.
Breast Cancer is the most common cancer of females in urban cities. It is a curable disease if detected early. The usual age of presentation is usually after 40 to 50 years of age, though it is becoming common in earlier age as well. This could be due to many factors like late marriages, older age of pregnancy, diet and lifestyle, etc. The usual presentation is a swelling or lump in the breast, not associated with pain. That is the reason why females are advised regular self-breast examination, clinical breast examination and annual mammograms for screening purpose in order to detect early breast cancers. Many times, the breast lump is associated with blood stained discharge from the nipple. There can be skin changes on the breast like thickening, crusting or sometimes itching. If the skin lymphatics get blocked, there may be pitting and or dimpling of the skin too. There may be lumps felt in the armpit felt too. Many times the lump is not noticeable or felt and felt by chance during a bath. These are some of the commonest presentations. The lady should immediately consult a doctor and get evaluated in such scenario. Many women are at increased risk of developing breast cancer like those who have a positive family history especially first degree relatives like mother& sister. Breast cancer is usually a disease of women but 1% of cases are also seen in men.
If a lady feels any such lump she should immediately bring it to the attention of a doctor or oncologist who can do the necessary evaluation and investigations. Breast cancer is curable if detected early, hence the importance!
The primary modality of treatment is surgery followed by chemotherapy and or radiotherapy and or hormonal treatment depending on the report of the specimen after the surgery. Many times if the lump cannot be operated upfront, initially chemotherapy and or targeted therapy can be given to shrink the tumor for better resectability.
People should be aware that having cancer is not the end of life. It can be treated like many other diseases and the most important thing is awareness and early detection for a durable cure.
I have taken MRI cervical spine .I have disc BULGES in C3-C4, C4-C5 and L5-S1. Please explain what might be the problem. This BULGES gives which type of problems. Please help me.
What is Giant cell arteritis?
Giant cell arteritis causes inflammation of the lining of the body’s medium and large arteries that carry oxygen-rich blood from your heart to the rest of your body.
Symptoms of Giant cell arteritis-
- Scalp tenderness
- Jaw pain when you chew
- Severe headache
- Tenderness over one or both sides of the forehead
- Permanent loss of vision in one eye
- Weight loss
Causes of Giant cell arteritis-
What causes these arteries to become inflamed isn’t known. However, it is thought that a combination of genetic and environmental factors is responsible for the condition.
Risk factors of Giant cell arteritis-
- Older adults
- Being women
- Polymyalgia rheumatica
- People born in Northern European countries
Complications of Giant cell arteritis-
Diagnosis of Giant cell arteritis-
Diagnosis of Giant cell arteritis includes the following tests and procedures:
- Physical exam
- Blood tests
- Duplex ultrasound
- Positron emission tomography (PET)
Precautions & Prevention of Giant cell arteritis
- Regular aerobic exercise, such as walking, can help prevent bone loss, high blood pressure and diabetes
- Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains
- Limit your intake of salt and sugar
- Get adequate amounts of calcium and vitamin D
- Avoid alcohol
Treatment of Giant cell arteritis-
- Homeopathic Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
- Acupuncture & Acupressure Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
- Psychotherapy Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
- Conventional / Allopathic Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
- Surgical Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
- Dietary & Herbal Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
- Other Treatment of Giant cell arteritis
Treatment of Giant cell arteritis-
Homeopathic Treatment of Giant Cell Arteritis-
Homeopathy heals the tissue and brings it back to normal. It treats the person as a whole. Treatment is constitutional. It means that homeopathic treatment focuses on the patient as a person, as well as his pathological condition. It balances the energy system, improves immunity and body functions. It naturally cures the root cause of disorder. Some of the homeopathic medicines for treatment of giant cell arteritis are:
- Ars alb
- Carb V
- Kali iod
Acupuncture and Acupressure Treatment of Giant Cell Arteritis-
Acupuncture relieves by improving the physiological function of the organs and organ system. In acupuncture therapist will first diagnose the case on the basis of energy system or chi blockage as well as on the basis of status of five elements. On this basis certain disease specific acupoints are selected and stimulated.
Psychotherapy and Hypnotherapy Treatment of Giant Cell Arteritis-
Psychotherapy and hypnotherapy can help in stress relief. They can help in better coping and early relief.
Conventional / Allopathic Treatment of Giant cell arteritis-
In the allopathic treatment of giant cell arteritis, inflammatory drugs such as corticosteroids are used. These drugs can effectively relieve pain.
Dietary & Herbal Treatment of Giant cell arteritis-
- Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains
- Eat lean meats and fish
- Limit your intake of salt and sugar