Merideth Wendland, MD

Breast cancer

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in the United States (other than skin cancer). Each year in the United States, approximately 233,000 women and 2,400 men are diagnosed with breast cancer.

Cancer occurs when there is an uncontrolled division of abnormal cells. In this case, within the breast tissue. Scientists believe that cancer is caused by a combination of known and unknown factors. The National Cancer Institute and studies identify lifestyle factors that can increase the risk of breast cancer, including diet, alcohol, physical activity, obesity, and environmental factors.

The strongest risk factor, however, is age. As women get older, their chances of developing breast cancer increases.

Genetically, a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer is greatly increased if she inherits the BRCA1 gene or the BRCA2 gene mutation. Changes in other genes are also associated with breast cancer, but they are much less common.

You can review more important about breast cancer on our website:

We encourage you to request an appointment with the cancer care team at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute and Research Center to discuss your individual situation or any questions that you may have.

For additional reading, information about side effects of treatments, and more, visit the National Cancer Institute.

Request an Appointment



See support services