Q:

What are some factors that increase the risk of developing ductal carcinoma in situ?

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Quick Answer

Factors that increase the risk of developing ductal carcinoma in situ include aging, personal history of breast disease, family history of breast cancer, having a first pregnancy after 30 and undergoing hormone replacement therapy following menopause, according to Mayo Clinic. Other factors that increase the risk include genetic mutations and obesity.

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Full Answer

In most cases, ductal carcinoma in situ does not cause any symptoms nor have any signs, explains Mayo Clinic. However, in some cases, the condition may appear as a lump in the breast or produce bloody discharge from the nipple. Most women realize ductal carcinoma in situ is a possibility after receiving a mammogram. The condition appears as small clusters of irregular sizes and shapes.

People who experience change in the breasts, such as lumps, puckers in the skin or nipple discharge, should contact a doctor, states Mayo Clinic. Doctors recommend annual breast cancer screenings for women over 40, and at-risk individuals sometimes require more frequent screening. Doctors can usually treat patients with ductal carcinoma in situ successfully with a lumpectomy, though radiation is sometimes part of the treatment plan. In other cases, a mastectomy may be necessary, especially if the condition affects a large area or multiple areas, or if the individual is not a candidate for radiation.

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