Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women. The American cancer society estimates that in 2002 about 192,200 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed among women in the U.S. alone. Breast cancer also occurs in men. An estimated 1,500 cases will be diagnosed among men. In 2002, there will be about 40,600 deaths from breast cancer in the United States.
What is breast cancer? Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that has developed from cells of the breast. To make it easier I'll put it this way. When the body needs new cells they will divide or reproduce. Sometimes the cells grow and divide out of control, which creates a mass of tissue called a tumor. Now if the cells that are growing out of control are abnormal and don't function like the body's normal cells the tumor is then called malignant or cancerous. Cells from the malignant tumors can invade and damage nearby tissues and organs. They may also travel through your blood stream or lymph system to other parts of your body. If the cells are normal cells the tumor is called benign or non cancerous. This Disease occurs mostly in women, but dose occur rarely in men.
There are many stages of breast cancer. Stage 0 breast cancer is when the disease is localized to the breast and lymph nodes.
Stage 1 is when the cancer is smaller than 1 inch across and hasn't spread.
Stage II is one of the following: the tumor is less than one inch but has spread to the underarm lymph nodes or the tumor is between 1-2 inches without spreading.
Advanced breast cancer results after cancer cells spreads to the lymph nodes and to other parts of the body.
Stage III breast cancer is also called locally advanced breast cancer. The tumor is now larger than 2 inches and has spread to the lymph nodes under the arm, or a tumor that is any size with cancerous lymph nodes that attach to each other or surrounding tissue.
Stage IIIB breast cancer is a tumor of any size that has spread to the Skin, Chest... [continues]
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