Breast Cancer Information

Some Facts about Breast Cancer

  • One in eight women will develop a breast cancer in her lifetime.
  • Nearly 213,000 women and 1,700 men will be diagnosed every year in the United States.
  • Over 62,000 women will develop the non-invasive type, which is called ductal carcinoma in situ.
  • The good news is that it is curable, when diagnosed and treated in the early stages!!! More than 80% of patients are free of their cancer at 10 years.

Please visit the Health Information Center's Breast Cancer Center External Icon for more information on:

  • Risk factors
  • Pathological features
  • Types of breast cancer
  • Treatments

Genetic Risk Factor

Five to ten percent of breast cancers are associated with a hereditary gene (mutation). The most common known inherited breast cancer genes are the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. Overall, for a person who carries a BRCA gene mutation, there is an estimated 50% to 85% chance of developing breast cancer during a lifetime. In addition, those breast cancer survivors who carry a mutation in one of these genes have an increased risk of developing a second breast cancer or ovarian cancer. The gene mutation can be carried and passed on by either males or females. Men who carry a BRCA gene mutation have increased risks for certain cancers, including breast cancer. There are other less common genes that are associated with inherited risk for breast cancer, such as the TP53, PTEN and ATM genes.

Genetic Counseling and Genetic Testing

Genetic counseling, includes a detailed family history evaluation and discussion, and is available to assess the likelihood of BRCA or other inherited gene mutation in the family.

If you are considering genetic testing, we strongly recommend that you first talk with our genetic counselor and physicians who are qualified to explain the potential benefits and results of testing, as well as discuss important issues such as risk to relatives, privacy and insurance, prior to deciding about testing. If you elect to pursue genetic testing, we will be available to assist you with this process.