symptoms of breast cancer in men - Breast cancer: Lumps, Causes And Treatment

symptoms of breast cancer in men

Symptoms Of Breast Cancer In Men

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Breast cancer in men

Breast cancer in men is a common occurrence and lot of medical research in carried on this aspect. Breast cancer in men is a malignant kind of tumor that initiates from the cells of breast.

 A malignant tumor is a type of tumor where the group of cancerous cells grows and eventually invades the surrounding tissues. They could also spread to the distant body areas. Breast cancer usually occurs in women but men also are vulnerable to it. 

There is also benign kind of breast cancer in men. These are regarded as the non cancerous or benign disorders of breast. There are variable types of benign breast cancers like fibroadenomas and papillomas. These are tissue masses or abnormal lumps. 

This kind of breast tumor in men does not spreads outside a breast and is not life threatening. It is important to be noted that a benign breast cancer is common in women and rarely occurs in men.

Exploring variable types of breast cancer in men                

There are different types of breast cancer in men. These include ductal carcinoma in situ or DCIS, infiltrating or invasive ductal carcinoma or IDC, infiltrating or invasive lobular carcinoma or ILC, lobular carcinoma in situ or LCIS, Paget disease of the nipple and inflammatory breast cancer.

In DCIS or intraductal carcinoma, cells from breast ducts do not spread via the duct walls into breast’s fatty tissue or they do not spread outside men’s breast. 

This kind of breast cancer in men can be efficaciously cured with surgery. In IDC, cancerous cells break through the duct wall and grow via breast’s fatty tissue and could spread to other body parts. 

ILC is a kind of breast cancer in men which starts in lobules of breast and grows into breast’s fatty tissue. It occurs rarely in men because they do not have much tissue of lobular. In LGIS, the cancerous cells are formed in lobules but they do not spread outside breast or to breast’s fatty tissue. 

Though it is a noninvasive kind of breast cancer but most of the specialists of breast cancer think it could risk fully turn into a breast cancer. Paget disease of the nipple is a type of breast cancer that initiates in the ducts of breast and spreads to nipple.

 It could as well spread to the areola or dark circles around a nipple. The nipple skin usually appears red, scaly and crusted with itching, burning, oozing or bleeding. This is a very common kind of male breast cancer. Inflammatory breast cancer is aggressive and rare kind of male breast cancer.

Facts about breast cancer in men

Breast cancer in men can occur at any age but it is much common in men aged 60 to 70. Exposure to radiation, high estrogen levels and a family history of breast cancer could increase the risk of a man to develop breast cancer. It could sometimes be caused due to mutations of inherited gene.

 Tests that could detect and diagnose breast cancer in men include biopsy, HER2 test and estrogen and progesterone receptor test.

Possibility and risk of breast cancer in men

Though it is quite a rare thing to hear about breast cancer in men but there certainly is a risk associated with men to acquire breast cancer. Not only women but men are exposed to the possibility of breast cancer. 

However the risk of breast cancer in men is far less than breast cancer in women. To understand this it is important that we understand the structure of breast tissue in men and women. 

We often tend to forget that even men possess breast tissues and this leads us to believing that breast cancer is not possible in males. Till the age of puberty the young girls and boys both possess a very small amount of breast tissue which consists of a few ducts that are located under the nipple. 

Once puberty occurs the hormones produced by the female ovaries leads to the growing of the breast ducts . However in men the growth of ducts is restricted by the male hormones produced by the testicles. Since the breast tissue of the men have smaller ducts and very few lobules there is a lesser probability of breast cancer in men as compared to women.

What Are The Causes of Breast Cancer In Men?

Since women are at a higher risk of breast cancer than men it becomes difficult to find out the main causes of the cancer in men because all the focus is towards the cancer in women. However there are a certain factors that have been found to cause breast cancer in men.

These causes include-Exposure to radiation-It is believed that men who were at a very young age exposed to radiation for a repeated period of time are at a risk of acquiring breast cancer at a later age in life.

Higher level of oestrogen-Normally oestrogen is produced by all men but what becomes a concern is when oestrogen is produced in a very high level. It mainly happens in conditions of chronic liver diseases, obesity and genetic disorders. So such men are at a higher risk of breast cancer.

Family history-It has also been found that men with mothers and sisters having breast cancer are at a higher risk of acquiring breast cancer.

Klinefelter’s Syndrome-This is a condition of genetic disorder which occurs when a man is born with an additional female chromosome which means that he has XXY chromosomes in place of the normal XY set of chromosomes. Such men are at a greater risk of breast cancer.

What Are The Symptoms Of Breast Cancer In Men?

Though there are many other symptoms but the most important symptom that you should look for diagnosis of breast cancer in men is the presence of a lump in the breast area. 

This lump is always painless and hence many a times gets unnoticed. Other indications can be a flow of discharge from the nipples, presence of a sore ulcer, breast swelling and formation of lumps just under the arms. Indication of any symptom requires immediate attention of the Doctor to start an early treatment of breast cancer in men if diagnosed.

Breast Cancer Symptoms in Men

There is a standard misconception that men cannot have breast cancer . Male often ignore the symptoms of cancer or mistake them for other illnesses. 

Factors like social stigma and embarrassment contribute to the increasing denial among men of the likelihood of getting cancer of the breast the event of male cancer ( of the breast) is essentially almost like what women encounter.

Males round the ages of sixty and seventy are more susceptible to the incidence of this sort of cancer than the other age bracket .

Symptoms of breast cancer in men are almost like those for ladies and include:

  • a breast lump

  • thickening of the breast tissue

  • dimpling of the skin of the breast

  • change in shape of the breast or nipple

  • a discharge from the nipple

  • a painful area

  • swollen lymph nodes within the armpit area.


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