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Breast Cancer Awareness Month – Know the Facts!

Breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer in women. About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point in their lives.1

The good news is that many women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early. A mammogram – the standard screening test for breast cancer – can help find breast cancer early when it’s easier to treat.

  • If you are a woman age 40 to 49, talk with your doctor about when to start getting mammograms and how often to get them.
  • If you are a woman age 50 to 74, be sure to get a mammogram every 2 years. You may also choose to, or your doctor may recommend you get them more often.
  • Talk to a doctor about your risk for breast cancer, especially if a close family member of yours had breast or ovarian cancer. Your doctor can help you decide when and how often to get mammograms.

Breast cancer does not only affect women. Although rare, men can also develop breast cancer. Less than 1% of all breast cancer cases occur in men. For men, the lifetime risk of being diagnosed is about 1 in 1,000.2 The chance of a man getting breast cancer increases with age. Other risk factors of male breast cancer include:3

  • Breast cancer in a close female relative
  • History of radiation exposure of the chest
  • Enlargement of breast tissue from drug or hormone treatments, or even some infections or poisons
  • Taking estrogen
  • Klinefelter’s syndrome
  • Severe liver disease
  • Disease or injury of the testicles

For more information on all breast cancer, visit the Center for Disease Control’s Breast Cancer webpage.

A good understanding can help defend against breast cancer. For the October challenge, use the National Cancer Institute Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool to estimate your breast cancer risk.


1. Healthfinder.gov

2. BREASTCANCER.ORG: Male Breast Cancer

3. WebMD: Breast Cancer in Men