The Different Types Of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is cancer that starts in the tissues of the breast.  In the US 40,000 women die of this cancer each year. Before I begin this post, even though breast cancer is extremely uncommon in teen girls as their breasts are still developing it is important to self examine or at least learn how to self examine from age 17 and learn what feels normal, as if someone is unfortunate enough to get breast cancer, it increases the likelihood of it being caught quickly.

Some forms of breast cancer can be due to issues with hormones. These hormones being oestrogen and progesterone. Oestrogen is the primary female sex hormone as well as a medication. It is responsible for the development and regulation of the female reproductive system and secondary sex characteristics. Progesterone is another female sex hormone which is used to stimulate the uterus to prepare for pregnancy.

One type of breast cancer is oestrogen receptor (ER) positive. This type of breast cancer is sensitive to estrogen and may respond to hormone therapy. There is then Progesterone receptor (PR) positive. This type of breast cancer is sensitive to progesterone and may respond to hormone therapy. Finally there is Hormone receptor (HR) negative. This type of cancer doesn’t have hormone receptors, so it won’t be affected by treatments aimed at blocking hormones in the body.

With the first two types mentioned, the hormones link to cancer as the cancerous cells have receptors that feed on those hormones. Which in turn stimulates the receptors causing the cell to grow.

The treatment for estrogen and progesterone receptor positive types is by using hormones.  These may inhibit or stop the production of these hormones. The most common hormone therapy drug is tomoxifen. Which blocks oestrogen receptors in the cells. Hormone inhibitors on the other hand cut off the cancer cells food supply causing them to die, however it is to be noted that these are only used in post menopausal women.

Thank you for reading.

New Study Shows Women Aren’t The Only Ones Who Can Use Contraception

Gynecology is one of my favorite specialties in medicine. I find it fascinated how the vagina, uterus and ovaries can do such an amazing thing: reproduction. However women aren’t the only things needed for conception, obviously a male is needed too.

sperm

For years, it has been a woman’s job to protect against unwanted pregnancies using birth control and tracking our cycles. However there has recently been a change in events.

A new research study suggests that Men can take birth control shots to prevent pregnancy in their female partners. Researchers are still working to perfect the combination of hormonal contraceptives to reduce the risk of mild to moderate side effects, including depression and other mood disorders.

The hormones contained within the shot work on lowering the sperm count in males.

In the study the men were given injections of 200 milligrams of a long-acting progestogen called norethisterone enanthate (NET-EN) and 1,000 milligrams of a long-acting androgen called testosterone undecanoate (TU) for up to 26 weeks to suppress their sperm counts. The hormones were effective in reducing the sperm count to 1 million/ml or less within 24 weeks in 274 of the participants. The contraceptive method was effective in nearly 96 percent of continuing users. Only four pregnancies occurred among the men’s partners during the efficacy phase of the study.

However the injections gave some side effects that made 20 men leave the study. The men reported side effects including injection site pain, muscle pain, increased libido and acne. Also many mood disorders were reported such as depression.

Despite these side effects more than 75 percent of participants reported being willing to use this method of contraception at the conclusion of the trial.

This shot is not available yet but hopefully within a couple years, this may be an option for contraception.

Thankyou.