He acknowledged that a diagnosis of advanced breast cancer at any age can be devastating. But experts need to continue to monitor the trend of advanced breast cancers in younger women, he added.
Dr. Courtney Vito, a staff surgeon of general oncologic surgery at the City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center in Duarte, Calif., agreed. "The number of women [aged] 25 to 39 presenting with advanced breast cancer or any kind [of breast cancer] still remains relatively low, especially compared to women 40 and older," she said.
Lichtenfeld said the finding "emphasizes the importance of breast self-awareness, that no one knows your body better than you do."
Some younger women with symptoms may be dismissed by the doctor who sees them, Vito said. "It is not unusual for a woman who is 25 to 39 with a breast lump to have sought consultation with multiple doctors before getting an appropriate work-up," she said.
To learn about early detection of breast cancer, visit the American Cancer Society.
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