6 questions about breast cancer

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in Belgium. One woman in nine will experience it during her lifetime. That’s a lot, and at the same time, myths about breast cancer continue to live in the collective imagination.

Does a bra increase the risk of breast cancer?

Transmitting antennas, cell phones, aluminum antiperspirants, bras, and breast implants: Many factors are said to increase the risk of breast cancer. However, none of them have been conclusively proven.

There is some evidence that chest irradiation at a young age increases the risk of breast cancer. However, you do not have to worry about mammography as radiation levels are many times lower than those of radiotherapy.

So don’t hesitate to get a mammogram if you notice any changes in your breast.

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Does breast cancer affect only elderly women?

While most breast cancers occur in women over the age of 50 with an average age of 63, younger women can also be affected, albeit at a much lower rate.

In 2018, 7 out of 1,000 cases of breast cancer occurred in women under 31 years of age.

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Does a lump in the breast necessarily mean cancer?

Some symptoms such as a lump may be a sign of cancer, but they may also be normal changes caused by the menstrual cycle. However, if this continues for more than a month, consult your doctor or gynecologist for further investigation.

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Does abortion increase the risk?

Abortion does not affect the risk of breast cancer. Breastfeeding has a protective effect. In addition, birth control pills and hormone replacement therapy for menopausal complaints, which contain estrogen, increase the risk of breast cancer very little. So it is important to discuss the pros and cons with your doctor.

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Is breast cancer usually hereditary?

Breast cancer is more common than usual in some families. About 15-20% of women diagnosed with breast cancer have a mother, sister, or daughter with the same disease. Hence, breast cancer “runs in the family”. This does not mean that all family members with this abnormality will automatically develop cancer, but it does mean that the risk is higher than the general population. Conversely, the fact that a family member has had breast cancer does not automatically mean that it is a familial cancer.

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Is a healthy lifestyle a guarantee against breast cancer?

A super healthy lifestyle doesn’t guarantee that you will never get breast cancer, but taking care of your health helps prevent many types of cancer and other diseases.

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Go to our breast cancer profile

Megan Vasquez

"Creator. Coffee buff. Internet lover. Organizer. Pop culture geek. Tv fan. Proud foodaholic."

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