(WFXR) — October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and according to the American Cancer Society, it kills 1 out of every 39 women.

According to doctors, 9% of women diagnosed with breast cancer are under the age of 45.

“Cancer in young women tends to be larger and often involves lymph nodes,” said Dr. Grace Makari-Judson,  Director of Cancer Services, Baystate Health.

Dr. Makari-Judson says of that 9%, the cancer is more likely to be found at a later stage, and is often more aggressive and difficult to treat.

According to the CDC, early detections of breast cancer frequently look like thickening or swelling of part of the breast, irritation of the breast skin, along with other signs.

Men should also be on the lookout.

“Men should really consider getting tested for the B-R-C-A gene which is a gene that can predispose people to breast and ovarian cancer,” Dr. Patricia Dickson, Medical Geneticist, Siteman Cancer Center.

Dr. Dickson says one out of every one hundred diagnosed with the disease in the united states is found in a man.

The recommendation for men with the “b-r-c-a” gene is to do self-breast exams checking for symptoms like lumps or skin discoloration.

“So if you have one of these genes that predispose you to cancer then you have a risk of passing that on to your daughter,” Dr. Dickson

No matter if you are a man or woman, if you have close relatives diagnosed with breast cancer it’s important to get tested.

“Know your family history and if appropriate have genetic testing. when we identify people with hereditary susceptibility it’s a chance to be proactive about your health. to be able to identify personalized strategies for screening and reducing the risk of cancer,” Dr. Makari-Judson.

The CDC says symptoms of the disease include thickening or swelling of part of the breast, and irritation of the breast skin. They recommend if a close relative has the disease to check with a doctor. Doctors say the best way to prevent Breast Cancer is to get mammograms regularly.

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