Diagnosis of Breast Cancer in Males

by Jastina Modise

Breast cancer is a type of cancer that develop in breast cells and can be seen through an x-ray or by a lump forming. Breast cancer is most common in females with approximately 1.7 million new cases and 522 000 deaths recorded every year globally, with only 1% cases recorded every year in males [1]. To this day, many people are still under the impression that breast cancer in males does not exist and those that know about the disease tend to misunderstand it. Currently, there are fewer studies that base findings on the diagnosis of breast cancer because of the uncommonness of the disease in early stages [2].

Researchers are currently faced with a dilemma of what stage of diagnosis is breast cancer in males more advanced. Data analysis was done in a cross-sectional study where a total of 93 737 breast cancer patients participated in the study from the Hospital Cancer Registry of the Oncocentro Foundation of Sao Paulo (HCR-OFSP). The clinical stages were grouped and both sexes were compared using a Mann-Whitney test [1].

The researchers found that stage III and IV cancer at diagnosis are the most common in males than in females, this shows that breast cancer in males can only be diagnosed at later stages than early stages. Table 1 indicates the prevalence of clinical stages at diagnosis in comparison between males and females [1].

Table 1. The clinical stages of breast cancer comparison between the two sexes.

The findings open up to new discoveries of diagnostic tests and possibly newer treatment for breast cancer in males. With Africa having little to no studies on breast cancer in males, let this research be the gateway for the African researchers to assist in discovering therapeutic ways to defeat this type of cancer.

“Once I overcame breast cancer,

 I wasn’t afraid of anything anymore”

Melissa Etheridge


  1. Spreafico, F. S; Cardoso-Filho, C; Cabello, C; Sarian, L. O; Zeferino, L. C and Vale, D. B. 2020. Breast Cancer in Men: Clinical and Pathological Analysis of 817 Cases. Review of American Journal of Men’s Health. 1-6.
  2. George, J; Albach, A; Robinson, A. S; Dixon III, L and Nguyen, Q. D. 2020. Diagnosis, Prognosis, and Management of Breast Cancer in an 81-Year-Old Male Patient. Cureus 12(5): e8277. DOI 10.7759/cureus.8277.

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