Understanding the Two Main Types of Breast Cancers

Many women are concerned about developing breast cancers as they move later into adulthood, but most people don’t know there’s more than one type. It’s helpful to know the difference if you’re facing a high risk of breast cancer or if you’ve been recently diagnosed.

The idea of cancer for many women is unclear. Cancer is simply having abnormal cell growth in specific parts of the body. Sometimes this abnormal cell growth causes tumors – and that’s the case for breast cancers.

The two main types are called ductal carcinoma and lobular carcinoma. They refer to wehre the cancer actually begins. Ductal carcinoma is a breast cancer that begins in the milk ducts of the breast. These are the ducts that move breast milk after childbirth.

If ductal carcinoma is not treated, it can spread to other tissues outside the ducts. The other type of breast cancer, lobular carcinoma, is a cancer that starts in the tissues that actually produce breast milk.

With either type, going untreated can lead to the development of more invasive breast cancers. While most breast cancers begin in these two areas, there are some that develop in other tissues. Beyond where the cancer developed, there are some factors to consider.

Breast cancers are typically sensitive to the hormone estrogen. That means that increased estrogen in the body will cause the tumor to grow more rapidly. If you have this type of cancer, your cancer cells have receptors for estrogen on their surface.

There are also some genes that make breast cancer more likely to grow quickly and spread to other tissues. One such gene is known as HER2. Normally, this gene is very helpful in helping the cells to grow and divide and helping the body repair itself.

If a cell has too many copies of this gene, however, it can cause cells to divide rapidly and out of control. If you test positive for this type of breast cancer, you’ll probably have a more aggressive cancer and you’ll have a higher risk of the cancer recurring later in life.

When you’re diagnosed with breast cancer it’s important to become educated about the type you have and the most up to date treatments for it. Breast cancer can be a scary diagnosis, but with early detection and treatment you’ll have a better chance of eradicating it.

All breast cancers are more likely to be cured if you take steps to catch them early. This includes self breast exam as well as mammograms at the appropriate age.

Learn more about your health online when you read the rest of our information here about: Breast Cancer and breast health issues

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