In the United States, breast cancer takes the leading position in female mortality from cancer. With age, the incidence of this disease tends to increase significantly. The occurrence of breast cancer also depends on genetic factors, radiation treatment, and the start of period before the age of 12. This paper aims to discuss breast cancer epidemiology and socioeconomic factors with regard to the young, middle, and older adults to identify risks, prevention, and opportunities.
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Depending on the age of a woman, breast cancer becomes the disease that largely identifies her life expectancy. In younger adults aged between 18 and 34, breast cancer is considered to have low incidence: only 1.9 percent of new cases is identified in this group. It is noted that 98 percent of new cases develops in middle adult females whose age diapason is 35-55 years (Sio et al., 2014). The majority of deaths occur in older adults, but 94 percent of deaths are attributed to women after their 45, as reported by the National Cancer Institute (Siegel et al., 2015). In addition, women who received chest radiation for any reasons in their young adulthood are more likely to develop breast cancer. In other words, the evidence shows that the risks increase with the age, which requires older adults to be more attentive to their health.
In terms of culture and ethnicity, one should state that the Hispanics demonstrate the lower incidence and morbidity rates compared to the White population. According to Power, Chin, and Haq (2018), the recent report shows that this population is characterized by 30 percent lower deaths and a 20 percent lower incidence rate. In turn, African-American women have the highest risks: 124.3 cases per 1000,000 (Power et al., 2018). The socioeconomic status plays an important role in the identification and treatment of breast cancer. People with a low income and those living in disadvantaged areas are less likely to have appropriate access to healthcare services, which reduces their chances for recovery (“Breast cancer”, 2019). Regardless of ethnicity, younger and older adults tend to avoid visits to doctors, while middle adults are more attentive to breast cancer symptoms (Burgoyne et al., 2015). Spirituality is another factor that affects the attitudes of adult women towards their health and their ability to cope with their condition. There is little evidence about spirituality of different adult categories in terms of breast cancer, yet it provides social support and belief, which are critical for handling depression.
For young adults, mammograms are not recommended, yet they are to take clinical breast examination every 1-3 years. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), women after 40 should be offered annual preventative screenings. Among the interprofessional resources, there are clinics, doctors’ offices, and hospitals. There are insurance plans that cover annual mammograms for women after 40, while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also provides an interactive map to find the nearest mammography facility (“Breast cancer”, 2019). It is important to note that for women with a lack of insurance, there are free or low-cost screening options. Community nurses, nurse educators, oncologists, and nurse practitioners are to work in cooperation to provide early disease detection and prevent deaths if possible. Thus, the implementation of risk reduction strategies needs to consider not only the age of patients but also their cultural, socioeconomic, and spiritual background.
Breast cancer. (2019). Web.
Burgoyne, M. J., Bingen, K., Leuck, J., Dasgupta, M., Ryan, P., & Hoffmann, R. G. (2015). Cancer-related distress in young adults compared to middle-aged and senior adults. Journal of Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology, 4(2), 56-63.
Power, E. J., Chin, M. L., & Haq, M. M. (2018). Breast cancer incidence and risk reduction in the Hispanic population. Cureus, 10(2), 2-12.
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Siegel, R. L., Fedewa, S. A., Miller, K. D., Goding‐Sauer, A., Pinheiro, P. S., Martinez‐Tyson, D., & Jemal, A. (2015). Cancer statistics for hispanics/latinos, 2015. Ca: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, 65(6), 457-480.
Sio, T. T., Chang, K., Jayakrishnan, R., Wu, D., Politi, M., Malacarne, D.,… Chung, M. (2014). Patient age is related to decision-making, treatment selection, and perceived quality of life in breast cancer survivors. World Journal of Surgical Oncology, 12(1), 230-238.