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Breast cancer - Statistics & Facts

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States, with over 268,000 new cases expected for the year 2019. The most common symptoms of breast cancer include a lump in the breast or armpit, a change in breast size or shape, fluid coming from the nipple, and red peeling skin. Risk factors for breast cancer include genetics, obesity, alcohol consumption, hormone therapy, and age. In 2017, while the ten-year probability of developing breast cancer among women aged 20 years was 0.1 percent, it was 3.9 percent among women aged 70 years.

In 2017, there were estimated to be around 68,000 cases of invasive breast cancer among women aged 60 to 69 years, with an additional 17,550 in situ cases. The rate of breast cancer in the U.S. is higher among non-Hispanic white women than among any other race or ethnicity, yet the mortality rate from breast cancer is highest among non-Hispanic black women. Deaths from breast cancer have decreased since the early 1990s, with a rate of 20.1 deaths per 100,000 population in the year 2016. Although breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among U.S. women, cancer of the lung and bronchus causes the most cancer-related deaths among this population.

Treatment of breast cancer depends on the type and stage at diagnosis, but common treatment options include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and hormone therapy. The most common type of treatment for early stage female breast cancer in 2016 was a combination of breast-conserving surgery and radiation therapy. Survival rates for breast cancer are some of the highest among the different cancer types, with 91 percent of patients surviving five years after diagnosis. An important measure for early detection and treatment are breast cancer screenings. The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that women aged 50 to 74 years receive a mammogram every two years. However, in 2015, only 64.3 percent of women aged 50 to 74 years with public health insurance reported receiving a mammogram within the past two years, compared to 76.7 percent of those with private insurance.

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Breast cancer in the U.S.

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