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Breast cancer in young women: what are the symptoms?

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The breast cancer in young women it is more widespread than one might think. In Italy, there are about 53,000 new cases of breast cancer every year. 5-6%, therefore around 3,000 cases, involve women who have not yet turned 40. In young women, more than 10% of new breast cancer cases are related to mutations in the BRCA genes.

a recent study explained that often in younger women breast cancer it can be more aggressive, invasive and rapidly growing. It is also more likely to be triple negative or HER2 overexpressed and has a higher relapse rate.

Triple negative breast cancer is particularly difficult to treat because it lacks the hormone receptors found in other types. This means doctors have limited choices when it comes to treatment options. However, chemotherapy and radiotherapy can be effective against this type of breast cancer.

Breast cancer in young women: ifrisk actors

They are roughly the same as breast cancer in older women:

  • having close relatives who have had breast cancer before age 45 or ovarian cancer at any age;
  • having changes in breast cancer genes (BRCA1 e BRCA2) or have close relatives with these gene changes;
  • having dense breast tissue identified during a mammogram;
  • being obese or severely overweight.

Screening and diagnosis: the problem of early diagnosis

Doctors often diagnose breast cancer at a later stage in young women than in older women. Women over the age of 40-45 undergo a mammogram on a regular basis. The younger ones do not. This can delay diagnosis and even a great deal. One possible reason could be that many women are unaware that breast cancer can occur at a young age, which can delay diagnosis and treatment. Additionally, breast tissue in younger women can be denser, making it difficult to find tumors during breast self-exams and mammograms.

Breast cancer in young women: prevision

Preventing breast cancer at a young age can be difficult. However, knowing your risk factors and seeking preventive care can be crucial. If a young woman has risk factors, she should discuss with her doctor to discuss high-risk breast screening programs. These women may also benefit from considering genetic testing. Maintaining a healthy body weight, regular moderate exercise, and limiting alcohol consumption can also reduce the risk of breast cancer.

Breast self-examination

Of course, young women must also proceed tobreast self-palpation. In case they are confronted with any lumps, changes or nipple discharge, changes in the skin of the breasts, they should immediately report this to the doctor.

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