Can Men Get Breast Cancer?

Breast cancer in men is very uncommon, however, it does occur. About 2,000 men in the United States develop breast cancer each year, compared to about 250,000 women.

Risk Factors for Male Breast Cancer

  • A family history of breast cancer among men and women in their family
  • Exposure to radiation to the chest
  • Disease or condition that’s related to having high estrogen levels, such as cirrhosis of the liver and a genetic disorder called Klinefelter syndrome
  • Having a gene alteration related to breast cancer risk, such as an altered BRCA2 gene

Important Facts to Know

  • Survival for men with breast cancer is similar to that for women with the same diagnosis and stage.
  • Breast cancers that occur in men are the same types that occur in women and are treated the same as in women.
  • Breast cancer screening for all men is not necessary or helpful.
  • Men should see a doctor if a lump develops under the skin of the nipple (Most of these lumps, especially in young men, are not cancer.)

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