Breast cancer

Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer.

 

What is breast cancer?

Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer.

Breasts are made of fat with connective and glandular tissue divided into lobes. A network of milk ducts spreads from the lobes to the nipple.
 

Breast cancer happens when these cells begin to grow abnormally and multiply quickly, forming a tumour.

Both women and men can get breast cancer, but it’s rarer in men.The risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer by age 85 is 1 in 8 for women and 1 in 631 for men.

Different types of breast cancer

Non-invasive means the cancer cells haven’t spread from their original location.

  • Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) – in DCIS, cancer cells are found within the milk ducts of the breast
  • Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS) – in LCIS, abnormal cells are found within breast lobules – but it’s not cancer. LCIS increases the risk of developing cancer, although most women with this condition won’t go on to develop breast cancer
  • ‘Invasive’ means the cancer cells have spread to nearby tissue.

  • Early breast cancer – in early breast cancer, cancer cells have spread from the ducts or lobules into nearby breast tissue. The cancer may also have spread to lymph nodes in the armpit. The most common types are invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) and invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC)
  • Locally advanced breast cancer – in locally advanced breast cancer, the cancer has spread to other areas nearby, such as the chest (including the skin, muscles and bones of the chest) and lymph nodes
  • Secondary, metastatic or advanced breast cancer means that the cancer cells have spread from the breast to other areas of the body, such as the bones, liver or lungs

    Non-invasive means the cancer cells haven’t spread from their original location.

  • Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) – in DCIS, cancer cells are found within the milk ducts of the breast
  • Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS) – in LCIS, abnormal cells are found within breast lobules – but it’s not cancer. LCIS increases the risk of developing cancer, although most women with this condition won’t go on to develop breast cancer
  • ‘Invasive’ means the cancer cells have spread to nearby tissue.

  • Early breast cancer – in early breast cancer, cancer cells have spread from the ducts or lobules into nearby breast tissue. The cancer may also have spread to lymph nodes in the armpit. The most common types are invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) and invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC)
  • Locally advanced breast cancer – in locally advanced breast cancer, the cancer has spread to other areas nearby, such as the chest (including the skin, muscles and bones of the chest) and lymph nodes
  • Secondary, metastatic or advanced breast cancer means that the cancer cells have spread from the breast to other areas of the body, such as the bones, liver or lungs

    Noticed a change in your breasts?

    Book an appointment at our One Stop Breast Clinics to identify if there is a problem

    One Stop Breast Clinic Maidstone

    One Stop Breast Clinic Milton Keyenes

    Kylie's breast cancer story

    Common symptoms of breast cancer

    Swelling in all or part of the breast

    Irritation or dimpling on the skin

    Pain in the breast or nipple

    Nipple turning inwards (retraction)

    Redness or scaliness

    Treatments we cover

    Radiotherapy kills cancer cells. It’s used in the early stages of cancer treatment or after it has started to spread. It can also be used to relieve pain and discomfort from cancer that has spread.

    Read more

    Chemotherapy is medication that treats your cancer. The drugs kill cancer cells, preventing them from dividing and spreading further.

    Read more

    Radiotherapy kills cancer cells. It’s used in the early stages of cancer treatment or after it has started to spread. It can also be used to relieve pain and discomfort from cancer that has spread.

    Read more

    Chemotherapy is medication that treats your cancer. The drugs kill cancer cells, preventing them from dividing and spreading further.

    Read more

    Meet our doctors

    Everything we do is focused on designing better care for our patients. With a network of 12 specialist oncology treatment centres across the UK, we provide the most up-to-date treatments and technology as standard.

    We attract and retain some of the most experienced doctors in the country, who all have a passion for improving patient outcomes and specialise in the treatment of different types of cancer.

    Meet our doctors

    Search for a centre near you

    Birmingham

    Little Aston Hall Drive, Sutton Coldfield, B74 3BF

    +44 (0)121 353 3055

    Chelmsford

    Springfield Cancer Centre, Lawn Lane, Chelmsford, CM1 7GU

    +44 (0)1245 987 901

    Cromwell Hospital

    164-178 Cromwell Rd, Kensington, London SW5 0TU, UK

    020 7460 5626

    Elstree

    Unit 710, Centennial Park, Centennial Avenue, Elstree, Borehamwood, WD6 3SZ

    +44 (0)208 236 9040

    Guildford

    BMI St Martha Oncology Centre, 46 Harvey Road, Guildford, GU1 3LX

    +44 (0)1483 806 000

    Maidstone

    17 Kings Hill Avenue, Kings Hill, West Malling, ME19 4UA

    +44 (0)1732 207 000

    Milton Keynes

    Sunrise Parkway, Linford Wood East, Milton Keynes, MK14 6LS

    +44 (0)1908 467 700

    Newmarket

    The Oaks, Fordham Road, Newmarket, CB8 7XN

    +44 (0)1223 907 600

    Nottingham

    The Park Centre for oncology, Sherwood Lodge Drive, Burntstump Country Park, Nottingham, NG5 8RX

    +44 (0)115 966 2250

    Oxford

    Sandy Lane West, Peters Way, Oxford, OX4 6LB

    +44 (0)1865 237 700

    Portsmouth

    Bartons Road, Havant, PO9 5NA

    +44 (0)23 9248 4992

    Southampton

    Spire Hospital, Chalybeate Close, Southampton, SO16 6UY

    +44 (0)238 076 4961

    Windsor

    69 Alma Road, Windsor, SL4 3HD

    +44 (0)1753 418 444