World Cancer Day: 5 common reasons why women get breast cancer
Breast cancer affects millions of women globally and there are some common reasons why women get breast cancer from their family history, exposure to radiation, obesity, consumption of alcohol among others.
While breast cancer can affect both the genders, women are at a greater risk of developing it as their breast cells are constantly exposed to the female hormones estrogen and progesterone made by her ovaries and over a longer period of time, this increases their risk of breast cancer. Breast cancer affects millions of women globally and there are some common reasons why women get breast cancer from their family history, exposure to radiation, obesity, consumption of alcohol among others. (Also read: World Cancer Day 2023: Top 4 deadliest cancers in India and their symptoms as per oncologists)
With age, the risk of this second most common cancer in women increases while 5% to 10% of breast cancer cases are thought to be hereditary. whose close blood relatives have this disease. Breast cancer risk is also higher among women whose relatives have this disease. Women with dense breast tissue have more glandular tissue and less fatty tissue, and have a higher risk of breast cancer.
“Breast cancer affects millions of women globally and understanding the factors contributing to its development is critical. There are several main reasons women may be at a higher risk of breast cancer. One of the most important factors is family history; women with a family history of the disease have a higher chance of developing breast cancer. If a woman has specific gene defects, such as BRCA1 or BRCA2, her risk of developing breast cancer increases. Another significant risk factor for breast cancer is age, especially for women over 50. Hormonal variables, as well as lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption, sedentary lifestyle, and excessive weight gain, can all increase the risk of breast cancer," Dr Gunjesh Kumar Singh, MBBS, MD, DM Medical Oncology (TMH Mumbai), ESMO certified medical oncologist (Europe), ACORD fellow (Australia), Consultant Medical oncology Medica hospital Ranchi told HT Digital.
Symptoms of breast cancer
"Breast cancer develops when cells in your breast expand and divide out of control, resulting in a lump of tissue known as a tumour. Breast cancer symptoms might include feeling a lump in your breast, seeing a change in the size of your breast, and noticing changes to the skin around your breasts. Mammograms can aid in early detection," says Dr. Rohan Khandelwal, Lead Consultant & HOD- The Breast Cancer, CK Birla Hospital Gurgaon.
Breast cancer apart from being hereditary, has several other risk factors like sedentary lifestyle, bingeing on alcohol, smoking, increasing obesity among youngsters, stress and poor dietary intake.
Top reasons of breast cancer in women
Dr Khandelwal also talks about other reasons of breast cancer in women.
1. Increasing age: It is seen that women above the age of 50 are more prone to get affected by breast cancer
2. Family History and genetics: You have a higher chance of getting breast cancer at some time in your life if your parents, siblings, children, or other close relatives have been diagnosed with the same.
3. Exposure to radiation: You are more likely to get breast cancer if you've previously undergone radiation therapy, especially to the head, neck, or chest.
4. Consumption to alcohol: High alcohol consumption on a regular basis could contribute to breast cancer development.
5. History of breast cancer: If you already had breast cancer or lump previously, the chances of developing again increases either in the same breast or the other one.
"It's crucial to be aware of these risk factors so that preventative measures are taken to lower your own risk. Women can reduce their risk of getting breast cancer by living healthier, more proactive lives by becoming aware of the factors that contribute to the disease's development," says Dr Singh.