Breast Cancer in Men

Breast Cancer in Men

Raising awareness of male breast cancer

Due to its rare occurrence in men, breast cancer is often mistaken for a female disease. However, in the United States, more than 2000 men are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. While the percentage of men who develop breast cancer is significantly lower than women, the disease is typically diagnosed later in development due to a lack of awareness surrounding male breast cancer. As a result, it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of breast cancer.

Symptoms of breast cancer

There are a few signs and symptoms that men need to be aware of concerning breast cancer:

  • A lump in the breast – A breast lump in men is not always indicative of cancer, but it is a symptom that requires further investigation. In most cases, the lump will only appear under one breast. Any discomfort or unusual lumps should be diagnosed by a doctor immediately.
  • Discharge from the nipple – Nipple discharge will often signify a potential malignancy in the breast. The discharge is typically a clear liquid, which is sometimes accompanied by blood.
  • Redness and flaky skin – Some men will develop red and flaky skin around the nipple. This is often one of the first symptom of a potential malignancy. The skin may appear thicker while becoming dry and flaky.
High risk candidates

While the risk of breast cancer remains rare in men, some men have a higher risk of contracting the disease. BRCA1 and BRCA2 are the two most common genetic mutations that lead to a higher risk of breast cancer in men. These mutations are hereditary and can be passed on from both parents. Additionally, men with a family history of breast cancer are at a higher risk.

The importance of regular screenings

Regular screenings are an important aspect of men’s health and the prevention of male breast cancer. Breast cancer in men is usually detected during its later stages due to a lack of information about the disease. However, men who are considered to be high risk candidates should be screened annually for breast cancer.


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