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Learn and Live


Although it is not known what causes breast cancer, there are some factors that appear to increase the risk of developing it. Having these risk factors does not mean that you will develop breast cancer, and not having any of them does not mean you will not. Known Breast Cancer Risk Factors ' Increasing age: About 80% of all breast cancer cases occur in women over 50 ' Having a mother, daughter, or sister who has had breast cancer ' First menstruating before age 12 ' Having started menopause after age 55 ' Never having had children ' Having your first child after age 30 ' Having inherited one of the genes known to increase cancer risk ' Having more than one or two alcoholic drinks a day ' Being overweight after menopause or gaining weight as an adult ' Recently using hormone replacement therapy for five years or longer ' Being exposed to large amounts of radiation through X rays or treatment for Hodgkin's disease at a young age Signs or Symptoms to Be Aware Of ' A lump, hard knot, or thickening in the breast ' Swelling, redness, or increased warmth in the breast ' Change in the size or shape of the breast ' Itchy, sore, or scaling area on the nipple or areola ' Nipple discharge (particularly if bloody) that starts suddenly ' Pulling in of the nipple ' Dimpling or puckering of the skin on the breast

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Sue Rochman