Breast and Prostate Cancer and Treatment

Introduction

Cancer refers to a group of diseases that arise due to unprecedented cell growth with a possibility of spreading to different parts of the body. The various types of cancer are distinguished based on the part of the body that they affect. Breast cancer is most prevalent among women. However, it can also affect men. As the name suggests, it attacks the breast. Prostate cancer is widespread among men, and it affects the prostate gland.

Clinical Presentation

One of the symptoms of breast cancer is the development of rashes around the nipples. A person with the disease may also experience pain in the breast or armpits. The color of the breast skin might also turn reddish (Shah, Rosso, & Nathanson, 2014). On the other hand, individuals suffering from prostate cancer experience pain when urinating. Mustafa et al. (2016) claim that a patient exhibits recurrent desires to urinate even at night. Moreover, they have challenges in starting and sustaining urination.

Risk Factors

Doctors are yet to discover the actual causes of breast cancer. Nevertheless, numerous factors have been found to expose individuals to the danger of contracting the disease. Age is one of the risk factors associated with breast cancer. As one grows old, the chances of developing the disease increase (Shah et al., 2014). Breast cancer can be hereditary. A person who hails from a family with a history of the disease is at risk of contracting the same. Age is a significant risk factor for prostate cancer as well (Mustafa et al., 2016). Men aged above 45 are at high risk of developing the disease. The condition is also genetic and mainly prevalent among African-Americans.

Pathophysiology

Breast cancer is a malignant growth that arises due to the multiplication of breast cells. Shah et al. (2014) aver, “Damage to the DNA and genetic mutations that lead to breast cancer have been experimentally linked to estrogen exposure” (p. 287). The majority of people with breast cancer have flaws in genes such as the P53, BRCA1, and BRCA2. The inability of the immune system to kill cells with defective DNA leads to one developing breast cancer. Prostate cancer arises due to mutation of the prostate gland cells. Mustafa et al. (2016) argue that the disease is categorized as epithelial cancer or adenocarcinoma. Mustafa et al. (2016) posit, “Initially, small clumps of cancer cells remain confined to otherwise normal prostate glands, a condition known as carcinoma in situ or prostate intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN)” (p. 6). With time, the cells replicate and metastasize to the stroma, resulting in the development of growth. In most cases, prostate cancer spreads to lymph nodes and bones. It may also attack the bladder, rectum, and lower uterus.

Diagnosis

Numerous tests are used to diagnose breast cancer. Physicians may examine the breast for possible lumps and other signs associated with the condition. Some patients may be required to undertake mammography to assess the possibility of abnormalities or lumps. Shah et al. (2014) assert that oncologists can also use a biopsy to ascertain the type of cancer. On the other hand, doctors use digital rectal examination (DRE) to diagnose prostate cancer (Mustafa et al., 2016). They may also conduct a biomarker test to determine the presence of chemicals attributed to the disease in urine or blood.

Treatment

The mode of treatment depends on the type of cancer and its stage. Doctors use chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and mastectomy to treat breast cancer. Mastectomy entails the removal of ducts, nipples, lobules, fatty tissue, and some skin. Hormone blocking therapy helps to prevent the possibility of the disease recurring. Radical prostatectomy is used to treat prostate cancer. Oncologists may insert radioactive seeds into the affected prostate to offer the desired radiation treatment. Chemotherapy helps to treat advanced prostate cancer. Doctors may also use androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) to minimize reduce the possibility of the hormones triggering cancer growth.

References

Mustafa, M., Salih, A. F., Illzam, E. M., Sharifa, A. M., Suleiman, M., & Hussain, S. S. (2016). Prostate cancer: Pathophysiology, diagnosis, and prognosis. IOSR Journal of Dental and Medical Sciences, 15(6), 4-11.

Shah, R., Rosso, K., & Nathanson, S. D. (2014). Pathogenesis, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of breast cancer. World Journal of Clinical Oncology, 5(3), 283-298.