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Breast Cancer

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Breast cancer is a group of diseases that affects breast tissue. Both women and men can get breast cancer, though it is much more common in women. Other than skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States. Some women are at higher risk for breast cancer than others because of their personal or family medical history or because of certain changes in their genes.

Getting mammograms regularly can lower the risk of dying from breast cancer. The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends that average-risk women who are 50 to 74 years old should have a screening mammogram every two years. Average-risk women who are 40 to 49 years old should talk to their doctor about when to start and how often to get a screening mammogram.

Mammograms are covered by most health insurance programs. You can get a screening mammogram without any out-of-pocket costs. If you are worried about the cost or don’t have health insurance, CDC offers free or low-cost mammograms and education about breast cancer. Find out if you qualify.

Next: Basic Information

Breast Reconstruction After Mastectomy

Picture of a woman who had a mastectomyMany women who have a mastectomy (surgery to remove an entire breast to treat or prevent breast cancer) have the option of having the shape of the removed breast rebuilt. Learn more.

Featured Resources

Breast Cancer: What You Need to Know fact sheet

Our “Breast Cancer: What You Need to Know” fact sheet [PDF-527KB] lists risk factors, symptoms, and screening recommendations.

Pam Bryant wearing a hat.

Diagnosed at age 43, Pam fought breast cancer with everything she had. Read her story in this blog post.

Know:BRCA logo

The Know:BRCA tool can help you learn about BRCA genes and assess your risk of having a change in your BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes.

Breast cancer screening and treatment: One size doesn’t fit all.

Share our new breast cancer images on your Web site, social network profile, or blog!

Photo of Pam Bryant

“Because of my family history, I’m at high risk.” Breast cancer survivor Pam shares her story in this podcast.

Screenshot of matte article about Pam Bryant.

This article about breast cancer [PDF-87KB] is free to use in any publication.