Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Largest study of its kind finds male breast cancer on the rise

24.05.2004


Men don’t recognize their disease until a late stage



The rate of male breast cancer is on the rise and the disease in men is usually detected when the tumors are bigger, have spread and may be more aggressive, compared to diagnosis of the disease in women, concludes the largest study ever conducted of male breast cancer.

The findings, published today in the online edition CANCER and will appear in the July 1 print issue of the publication, suggest both that breast cancer in men may have some important biological differences from the female disease, and that men are seemingly less aware than they should be that they can develop breast cancer.


According to the study’s lead investigator, Sharon H. Giordano, M.D., assistant professor in the Department of Breast Medical Oncology at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, the incidence of the disease has increased significantly in the last 25 years, from .86 to 1.08 per 100,000 men.

"Male breast cancer is rare, accounting for less than one percent of all breast cancer, or about 1,600 new cases in the United States in 2004. While, it’s not as high of an increase in cases as that in women, men should be alert to the possibility that the disease could affect them," says Giordano.

Because breast cancer in men is rare, little is known about how it differs from breast cancer in women and how it should be best treated. To assess dissimilarity, Giordano and her M. D. Anderson colleagues used information from a National Cancer Institute database called SEER (Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results), which is the authoritative source of information on cancer incidence and survival in the United States.

They analyzed SEER data from 1973 through 1998 on 2,524 cases of male breast cancer and 380,856 cases of female breast cancer. Compared to female patients, the investigators found that male patients were significantly older when diagnosed - 67 years versus 62 years of age. They were also more likely to have later stage disease and had more spread of the cancer to their lymph nodes.

"It’s perhaps ironic that tumors in men are easier to feel than they are in women, yet the disease is being discovered at a later stage in men than in women," says Giordano.

One reason for such a late diagnosis may be that men assume they are experiencing a benign condition called gynecomastia, or atypical growth of breast tissue that affects about a third of males at some point in their lives, says Giordano. The condition, common in adolescent boys, can come and go over a man’s lifetime and "men may think new growth of breast tissue is just another occurrence of this condition," she explains.

Furthermore, Giordano and the researchers found that the most common types of cancers in men were invasive ductal carcinoma, found in 93.4 percent of the men, and papillary carcinoma, which accounted for 2.6 percent of the cases.

Yet despite these differences, five-year, 10-year and median survival were not different between men and women, investigators say.

Also of interest to the researchers was the finding that male patients are more likely than female patients to have estrogen receptor-positive tumors.

"We are not sure why this is so, but it may indicate some important differences in tumor biology," she says. "In addition, this implies that use of tamoxifen in men may be as beneficial as it is to many women," says Giordano.

"Now that we have a clearer understanding of the biology of breast cancer in men, further research is needed to determine the optimal treatment for men," she says.

Laura Sussman | EurekAlert!

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New malaria analysis method reveals disease severity in minutes
14.08.2017 | University of British Columbia

nachricht New type of blood cells work as indicators of autoimmunity
14.08.2017 | Instituto de Medicina Molecular

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Gold shines through properties of nano biosensors

17.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Greenland ice flow likely to speed up: New data assert glaciers move over sediment, which gets more slippery as it gets wetter

17.08.2017 | Earth Sciences

Mars 2020 mission to use smart methods to seek signs of past life

17.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>