Do Men Get Breast Cancer?





Do Men Get Breast Cancer? Can men fall victim to the dreaded breast cancer disease? Apparently they do. If you are a guy, you have a one in a thousand chance of getting breast cancer during your lifetime. This is 100 times less common compared to women but the risk is still there.

If you have lumps in your breast area, you should consult your doctor because, as in the case of women, lumps is one of the symptoms of breast cancer among men.

Here are some interesting facts about male breast cancer from the U.S. National Cancer Institute.

Breast cancer may occur in men. Men at any age may develop breast cancer, but it is usually detected (found) in men between 60 and 70 years of age. Male breast cancer makes up less than 1% of all cases of breast cancer.

The following types of breast cancer are found in men:

  • Infiltrating ductal carcinoma: Cancer that has spread beyond the cells lining ducts in the breast. Most men with breast cancer have this type of cancer.
  • Ductal carcinoma in situ: Abnormal cells that are found in the lining of a duct; also called intraductal carcinoma.
  • Inflammatory breast cancer: A type of cancer in which the breast looks red and swollen and feels warm.
  • Paget disease of the nipple: A tumor that has grown from ducts beneath the nipple onto the surface of the nipple.

Lobular carcinoma in situ (abnormal cells found in one of the lobes or sections of the breast), which sometimes occurs in women, has not been seen in men.

Do Men Get Breast Cancer

If you are wondering about the procedures that your doctor will use to detect and diagnose if you have breast cancer, the following tests may be used (according to the National Cancer Institute):

1. Biopsy: The removal of cells or tissues so they can be viewed under a microscope by a pathologist to check for signs of cancer. The following are different types of biopsies:

Fine-needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy: The removal of tissue or fluid using a thin needle.
Core biopsy: The removal of tissue using a wide needle.
Excisional biopsy: The removal of an entire lump of tissue.

2. Estrogen and progesterone receptor test: A test to measure the amount of estrogen and progesterone (hormones) receptors in cancer tissue. If cancer is found in the breast, tissue from the tumor is checked in the laboratory to find out whether estrogen and progesterone could affect the way cancer grows. The test results show whether hormone therapy may stop the cancer from growing.


3. HER2 test: A test to measure the amount of HER2 in cancer tissue. HER2 is a growth factor protein that sends growth signals to cells. When cancer forms, the cells may make too much of the protein, causing more cancer cells to grow. If cancer is found in the breast, tissue from the tumor is checked in the laboratory to find out if there is too much HER2 in the cells. The test results show whether monoclonal antibody therapy may stop the cancer from growing.

Do Men Get Breast Cancer: Symptoms, Types, Diagnosis of Male Breast Cancer Posted 26 October 2010.