Breast Cancer Treatment


Only lung cancer kills more women each year in the United States than
breast cancer does. The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimates that over
184,000 new cases of breast cancer were diagnosed in women in 1996 (ACS Breast).
Although these statistics are alarming, there are a number of treatment options
available for those that are diagnosed with breast cancer.
The best way to treat any disease is to prevent it. Since little is
known about breast cancer, there are no established rules for prevention. The
ACS recommends that women age twenty and older perform monthly breast self-exams,
and it also suggests clinical examinations every three years (ACS Breast).
Mammography is also a ...

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are used to destroy or
control cancer cells anywhere in the body. Chemotherapy and hormonal therapy
are considered systemic treatments.
Surgery is the most common treatment for breast cancer. Although there
are many different types of breast cancer surgery, they all fit into a few basic
categories. An operation that aims to remove most or all of the breast is
called a mastectomy. If at all possible, doctors shy away from mastectomies due
to the side effects which include loss of strength in the closest arm, swelling
of the arm, and limitation of shoulder movement. If a mastectomy must be
performed, the physician will often suggest post surgical reconstruction of the
breast (Kushner 37).
Another type of breast cancer surgery is called breast-sparing surgery.
This category would include lumpectomies and segmental mastectomies. In this
situation, doctors remove only the tumor and make an attempt at sparing the rest
of the breast tissue. These procedures are often ...

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cycles; a treatment period followed by a recovery period, then another
treatment, and so on (NIH 23). Like radiation therapy, chemotherapy can be
administered on an outpatient basis. Although chemotherapy works to kill cancer
cells, some of the side effects almost make treatment unbearable. Common side
effects include nausea, decrease of appetite, hair loss, vaginal sores,
infertility, and fatigue (ACS For Women 32). Most of these effects, except
infertility, cease when the treatment is over.
There are many other possible treatments for breast cancer that are
currently under study. One of the biggest clinical trials involves hormone
therapy. This treatment uses medication ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 9/20/2008 09:27:17 AM
Category: Health & Medicine
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1314
Pages: 5

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