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Male Breast Cancer: Less Common Than For Women, But Still Serious


Male Breast Cancer


Contributor: Jame Abraham, MD


It’s not unusual for a patient to ask if men can get breast cancer, and the answer to the question is yes. In 2017, about 2,470 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed, and about 460 men will die from breast cancer, according to the American Cancer Society.

But breast cancer is about 100 times less common among men than among women. For men, the lifetime risk of getting breast cancer is about 1 in 1,000. The number of breast cancer cases in males relative to the population has been fairly stable over the last 30 years.

The most common symptoms of male breast cancer are:



  • A lump or swelling that is usually, but not always, painless

  • Skin dimpling or puckering

  • Nipple retraction

  • Redness or scaling of the nipple or breast skin

  • Discharge from the nipple


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