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Comfort Keepers At Home Care in Orange CA: A Brief look at Breast Cancer

Are you concerned about how breast cancer could affect your elderly loved one? Read the following advice from at home care experts - Comfort Keepers of Orange, CA

The impact of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a health menace and most of us are aware of it due to its detrimental effects. It is however good to mention that as of 2017, there are more than 3 million breast cancer survivors in the USA, a figure that Comfort Keepers at home care acknowledges is commendable. This impressive figure has been attained after a number of breast cancer awareness campaigns and advocacy for early screening, events which are mostly attributed to many organizations and foundations. Newer and more refined treatment modalities have also had a hand in this. The American Cancer Association has reported the steady decline in breast cancer related deaths that have been witnessed since 1989, which could be tied to the awareness and screening campaigns.

With all these being said, breast cancer is still among the leading causes of cancer-related deaths in women, coming in as second. Comfort Keepers at home care is of the view that much still has to be done especially for the vulnerable groups, particularly the elderly women who are likely to develop breast cancer. Regular screening programs need to be instituted to detect the lesions at their earliest forms which are easy to eradicate completely. Caution has to been taken when dealing with women above 65 years old with aggressive treatment being recommended.

What breast cancer is?

An unsuppressed and abnormal proliferation of cells heralds cancer, in breast cancer there is an abnormal growth of breast cells. This could be occasioned by a mutation or a modification of genes responsible for the regulation of cell cycle growth. The growths or tumors could be either benign or malignant, with the latter being associated with breast cancer. Some of the risk factors that Comfort Keepers at home care thinks to be worth taking note of:

  • An advanced age
  • A positive family history of breast or ovarian cancer
  • Having dense breast tissue
  • Regular use of alcohol
  • A history of radiotherapy to the chest or breast
  • Use of progesterone or estrogen containing drugs

Of all the types of breast cancer the commonest ones are ductal carcinoma and lobular carcinoma, which affect the duct system, draining to the nipple, and the lobules respectively. The other varieties which are less common include adenoid cystic carcinoma, medullary carcinoma and low-grade adenosquamous carcinoma. All progress from a bad to worse state which could involve the lymph nodes.

Lymph nodes are basically a clump of cells that can be felt beneath the armpit; they usually function as filters in the lymphatic system. Breast cancers with a bad prognosis are in most cases associated with lymph node involvement.

The Detection and Management of Breast Cancer

The first step in the detection of breast cancer should be self breast examination. You should check to see if there are any lumps or masses and then have your breasts checked on a regular basis by a health care provider. Symptoms which could indicate the possibility of having breast cancer include abnormal swellings, change in skin color or scaling, abnormal nipple discharges such as blood.

Mammography has been recommended as a screening tool especially for the vulnerable group, the elderly women. Low-level X-rays are used to image breast tissue and this could be done for screening purposes for those who are asymptomatic, or for diagnostic purposes to reveal more details of a suspicious breast lesion.

Some people have questioned the utility of mammograms in the detection and subsequent treatment of breast cancer, arguing that the reduced life expectancy of the affected women argues against it. Uncertainties relating to this could be handled by revealing to the patient the available options and letting them make an informed decision on the way forward.

Comfort Keepers at home care advises on consulting a physician who could clear the air on this; they are well-versed with the implication of the age-related factors in the management of breast cancer. The various treatment modalities that you could employ include the use of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, surgical resection as well as the use of hormonal therapy for the receptor-positive tumors. You can find useful information relating to breast cancer from the BreastCancer.org, especially on the available treatment modalities, both the old and new and the side effects that you should be lookout for each of the treatment modalities.

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