Breast cancer awareness campaigns often focus on women. However, senior men should also be aware of the facts regarding their risk for developing breast cancer. Kingwood senior care experts discuss 4 things all older men should know about breast cancer.
1. All Humans Have Breast Tissue
Everyone is born with milk ducts. In men, the milk ducts are undeveloped, and the breast tissue is less dense. However, breast cancer can still originate anywhere within a man’s breasts.
2. The Symptoms Are Different for Men
Women are taught to look for signs of breast cancer that affect the appearance of their breasts, such as dimpling or lumps. However, senior men may only notice a small bump that causes no pain, or they may have redness or discharge if the cancer affects the nipple. Due to the subtle signs associated with breast cancer in older men, it is increasingly important for them to perform monthly self-checks.
3. Men May Have to Ask for a Breast Exam
Doctors frequently skip breast exams during a senior man’s annual physical, which can lead to a late diagnosis and a worse prognosis than the man would have had if the cancer were detected sooner. However, doctors can readily assist older men with learning how to perform self-checks when they are asked.
4. Genetic Testing Is an Option
Breastcancer.org states a man’s risk of developing breast cancer is one in 1,000. Though this sounds small compared to a woman’s 1 in 8 odds of receiving a diagnosis, it is still significant enough to warrant further testing. It is understood now that mutations on the BRCA2 gene are linked to the development of breast cancer in both men and women. Men who have this genetic test done can find out about their risk and help the rest of their family learn about their risks in the process.
To learn more about senior health and wellness, reach out to Home Care Assistance. Our dedicated caregivers can prepare nutritious meals, assist with exercise, provide transportation to medical appointments, and help with a wide variety of everyday tasks. For more information on the respite and 24-hour care Kingwood seniors can count on, call one of our knowledgeable Care Managers at 832-412-1345 to schedule a free in-home consultation.