Breast Cancer and Men

father and son face to faceAlthough it is much less common, men can also develop breast cancer. Men have the same breast tissue as women only not as developed. As of 2013 the latest estimate was that a man’s lifetime risk of developing breast cancer was 1 in 1000, far less than a woman’s risk at 1 in 8. However, the bigger issue is that men tend to go undiagnosed longer because in general we do not tend to suspect breast cancer when a man develops symptoms.

The most common symptom in men is a firm, nonpainful lump or mass generally located just below or around the nipple. There may also be skin changes around the nipple or in the area of the nipple such as puckering or dimpling, sores or ulcerations that are unexplained, redness or scaling of the nipple and/or surrounding tissue, nipple that is inverted or turning inward, or a discharge from the nipple that is bloody or opaque.  These are some but not all of the possible signs and symptoms of breast cancer. The key is to have anything suspicious examined to rule out the possibility of breast cancer.

Breast cancer is generally easier to find in men because they have much less developed breast tissue. However, because men often wait longer to seek medical attention, they are often diagnosed in the later stages of the disease. Because early detection is so important, it is equally important that men be informed about what to look for, perform regular self-examinations, and see their doctor right away if they detect anything suspicious.

This is valuable information that all men need to know. Whether you are male or female I ask you to share this information with the men in your life.Father and son arms up

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