The term "BREAST CANCER" refers to a malignant tumor that has developed from breast cells. Generally, breast cancer originates in the cells of the lobules, which are the milk-producing glands, or in the ducts, which are the pathways that transport milk from the lobules to the nipple. Less frequently, it can originate in stromal tissues, which include the fatty and fibrous connective tissues of the breast.
Over time, cancer cells can invade the surrounding healthy breast tissue and reach the lymph nodes (small organs that remove foreign substances from the body) of the armpits. If the cancer cells reach the lymph nodes, they get an access door to other parts of the body.
Breast cancer is always caused by a genetic abnormality (an "error" in the genetic material). However, only 5-10% of cases are the result of an inherited anomaly of the mother or father. In contrast, 85-90% of breast cancer cases have their origin in genetic abnormalities linked to the aging process and the "natural wear and tear" of life.
Signs and symptoms of breast cancer may include the following:
-A lump or thickening in the breast that feels different from the surrounding tissue.
-Change of size, shape or appearance of a breast.
-Changes in the skin that is on the breast, as dimple formation.
-The recent investment of the nipple.
-Skinning, skin shedding, scabbing and peeling of the pigmented area of the skin surrounding the nipple (areola) or breast skin.
-Redness or small holes in the skin that is on your breast, like the skin of an orange.
The Institute of Interventional Oncology (IDOI Mexico) recommends that if you find a lump or other breast change, even if you had normal results on a recent mammogram, check with your doctor for immediate evaluation.