Breast Cancer on the Rise


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — A study by researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital reveals a disturbing uptick in breast cancer rates, affecting women and, in some cases, men. According to, each year, 30 percent of all newly diagnosed cancers in women are breast cancer. And in 2023, almost 300 thousand cases of breast cancer were diagnosed.

While advances in medical research have brought about breakthroughs in cancer treatment, the factors contributing to the rise in breast cancer cases, especially in women younger than 50, remain multifaceted.

Thomas Samuel, MD, Oncologist at Cleveland Clinic says, “You just don’t see 31-year-olds with breast cancer.”

Experts attribute this rise to a combination of factors, including lifestyle changes, environmental influences, and genetic predispositions. But with patients getting younger and younger, there are different concerns.

Doctor Samuel says, “To have the conversation for, you know, ‘What can I do to preserve my eggs, to preserve my fertility?’”

Health organizations and advocacy groups are intensifying efforts to raise awareness about breast cancer and the importance of regular screenings. They emphasize the need for women to be vigilant about self-examinations and to schedule routine mammograms. Making strides toward a healthier and cancer-free future.

According to Harvard Medical School, possible risks for early-stage cancer are consumption of alcohol, smoking, eating highly processed foods, obesity, and sleep deprivation.

Contributors to this news report include: Adahlia Thomas, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.


REPORT #3161

BACKGROUND: Breast cancer is a type of cancer that originates in the cells of the breast tissue. It is one of the most prevalent forms of cancer among women worldwide, though it can also affect men, albeit less frequently. Breast cancer occurs when cells in the breast begin to grow abnormally and form a tumor. These tumors can be either benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous). Each year in the United States, about 240,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed in women. Modern lifestyles characterized by sedentary behavior, poor dietary habits, and increasing rates of obesity have been linked to a higher risk of breast cancer. Lack of physical activity and unhealthy diets can contribute to hormonal imbalances and inflammation, which are known risk factors for breast cancer. While the majority of breast cancer cases are sporadic, with no clear genetic cause, a small percentage are due to inherited genetic mutations. Improved genetic testing and awareness of familial risk factors may have led to more women being identified as high-risk and undergoing screening, which could contribute to the observed rise in breast cancer cases.


THE STUDY: The rise in breast cancer among women is a complex and multifaceted issue that involves various factors, including changes in lifestyle, reproductive patterns, environmental exposures, and improvements in detection and reporting. Experts from the Cleveland Clinic attribute the rise in breast cancers diagnosed in young women to many different factors including lifestyle changes, environmental changes, and genetic predispositions. The importance of regular screenings has become greatly emphasized and recommended. With women getting diagnosed at younger and younger ages, experts also greatly recommend women to preserve their eggs and fertility. “From our data, we observed something called the birth cohort effect. This effect shows that each successive group of people born later — e.g., a decade later — have a higher risk of developing cancer later in life, likely due to risk factors they were exposed to at a young age,” said Shuji Ogino, a professor at Harvard Chan School and Harvard Medical School and a physician-scientist in the Department of Pathology.


NEW REGULATIONS: The National Comprehensive Cancer Network has released new guidelines that now recommend that all women get screened for breast cancer every year starting at age 40 years old. Women with a higher-than-average risk should have a physical exam every six to 12 months. Public health officials agree that breast imaging saves lives and staying ahead of the problem at hand is the best way to ensure women’s safety. Several different organizations have revised their screening processes and mandatories. “These are the latest, evidence-based guidelines from experts in the field of breast cancer screening and diagnosis from more than two dozen leading cancer centers in the United States,” says Therese Bevers, MD, professor of clinical cancer prevention at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.


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Arlene Allen

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