Breast cancer in men occurs due to the abnormal alterations and expansion of unusual cells in the breast, resulting in tumor formation. The tumor in the breast can be malignant or non-cancerous. Breast cancer usually matures in adjacent lymph nodes but can also mature in other body parts, including the bones, brain, liver and lungs. The breast cancer types are similar for men and women. Most cancer development begins from the ducts or lobes and is referred to as ductal or lobular carcinomas. The different types of breast cancer in men include Ductal carcinoma, Lobular carcinoma, and Invasive lobular carcinoma. After a breast cancer diagnosis, additional tests are performed to understand the cancer and determine the best treatment strategy.
Most of the breast tumors in males include oestrogen and progesterone receptors, and hormone therapy is provided as an effective treatment for these tumor types. HER2 positive tumors evolve in breast cancer among men as they have excessive HER2 receptors or copies of the HER2 gene. The HER2 gene produces an essential enzyme for tumor cell development in cancer cells. Younger males with breast cancer are more likely to develop Triple-negative tumors.
Breast Cancer in Men
Talking about Breast Cancer in Men, where normal cells in the breast alter and expand out of control, they create a tumor that is a lump or a leaf of cells. Tumors can be malignant or non-cancerous. A malignant tumor has a vast potential to grow and mature in different parts of the body. The term mammary tumor is a tumor that will develop but not spread.
Breast cancer matures when it grows into other parts of the body when breast cancer cells travel via the blood and lymph arteries to other parts of the body. It is referred to as metastasis.
Breast cancer usually matures in adjacent lymph nodes but can also develop in other body parts, including the bones, brain, liver and lungs. It is metastatic breast cancer. The extracellular matrix makes up the majority of the breasts. A system of branches is made up of microscopic tube-like structures called lobules, and these lobes are all connected to the nipple, which is positioned in the Centre of the areola by tiny ducts. The dark area which surrounds the nipple area is known as the areola. The breast also has blood and lymph channels running through it. The lymph system eliminates biological waste while the blood stimulates the cells.
Types of Breast cancer
The most common kinds of breast cancer are similar for men and women 1. The majority of those begin from the ducts or lobes and are referred to as ductal or lobular carcinomas.
- Ductal carcinoma is a cancer of the intestines. The cells that line the lactiferous ducts are where the tumors begin. It is a prevalent type of breast cancer.
- Lobular carcinoma is a type of cancer that affects the lob, and the lobules are where it all begins. But the occurrence in men is rare. LCIS can only be found in lobules. It is not a cancerous condition.
- Invasive lobular carcinoma is a type of cancer that spreads throughout the body. This type of cancer has gone beyond the lobules 2.
- Even among the same types of breast cancer, breast cancer is not a single illness. The GP will propose lab tests on the malignant tissue if diagnosed with breast cancer. These tests will help your GP understand more about your cancer and determine the best treatment strategy 3.
- Positive or negative hormone receptors. “Hormone receptor-positive” breast tumors express oestrogen receptors (ER) and progesterone receptors (PR). Cells have proteins that act as receptors. “ER-positive” tumors are those that have oestrogen receptors. “PR positive” tumors are those that have progesterone receptors. The hormones oestrogen and progesterone are required for the growth of certain malignancies. Because most breast tumors in males include oestrogen and progesterone receptors, hormone therapy is a viable treatment option for most of these tumors 4. “Hormone receptor-negative” breast cancer is defined as cancer that does not express oestrogen or progesterone receptors.
- Positive or negative for HER2. The HER2 gene is required to grow between 10% to 20% of breast tumors. These tumors are called “HER2 positive” because they have excessive HER2 receptors or copies of the HER2 gene. The HER2 gene produces an essential enzyme for tumor cell development in cancer cells. This type of cancer has the potential to spread more quickly. “HER2 negative” cancers don’t have a lot of HER2.
- “Triple-negative” refers to a tumor that does not express ER, PR, or HER2. Triple-negative cancers tend to grow more quickly. Younger males with breast cancer may be more likely to develop this type of cancer.
- 1.Yalaza M, Inan A, Bozer M. Male Breast Cancer. J Breasth Health. Published online January 7, 2016:1-8. doi:10.5152/tjbh.2015.2711
- 2.Rudlowski C. Male Breast Cancer. Breast Care. Published online 2008:6-6. doi:10.1159/000136825
- 3.Zehr K. Diagnosis and Treatment of Breast Cancer in Men. Radiol Technol. 2019;91(1):51M-61M. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31471487
- 4.Shandiz FH, Tavassoli A, Sharifi N, Khales SA, Kadkhodayan S, Khales SA. Hormone Receptor Expression and Clinicopathologic Features in Male and Female Breast Cancer. Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention. Published online February 25, 2015:471-474. doi:10.7314/apjcp.2015.16.2.471