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Breast cancer

illustration breast cancer femaleBreast cancer is by far the most common cancer in women. 

The disease is characterized by a varied course, from rapidly growing tumors with early distant metastasis, to slow growing tumors which may stay in the breasts without metastasizing. 25-30% of these cases are agressive.

The majority of breast tumors are carcinomas. Sarcomatoid tumors are rare, but must be kept in mind as they are treated differently from other breast carcinomas.

Breast cancer rarely occurs in men.The treatment is similar as for women.


Approximately 12.4 % of women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point during their lifetime. The risk of breast cancer increases with age and breast cancer primarily occurs in women over the age of 50. The average age at diagnosis is 62 years.

In 2017, it is estimated to be 252,710 new cases of female breast cancer in the United States (1).



Age-specific incidence of breast cancer, 2010–2014.

Source: National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, USA



Incidence of breast cancer, 1975–2014.

Source: National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, USA

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