PET/CT & Breast Cancer
Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women. It is estimated that one in eight women in the United States will develop breast cancer at some point in their lifetime. Breast cancer can also affect men, although only in rare instances.
Breast cancer occurs when breast cells become abnormal and form more cells in an uncontrolled manner. A tumor, which is a mass of tissue, develops out of these extra cells and can either be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
99% of all breast cancer cases are carcinomas (malignant tumors that grow out of skin tissue or tissues that lines the body cavities of internal organs).
There are two major groups of breast cancer and these are:
This term is given to breast cancer cases in which cancerous cells are confined within a duct and therefore do not penetrate surrounding tissues.
This term is given to breast cancer cases in which cancerous cells grow through the basement membrane that surrounds the body ducts. Invasive carcinomas can spread into the supporting tissue (stroma) between the blood vessels, ducts, lymphatic vessels, and nerves. Approximately 95% of all breast cancer cases are forms of invasive carcinoma.
Currently, the cause of breast cancer is unknown. However, medical studies have identified a variety of conditions that increase the odds of breast cancer susceptibility: