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Making decisions about breast cancer treatment involves a range of choices from double mastectomy to lumpectomy. Each woman must be informed and educated about her treatment and prevention options so she can make a decision with her doctor that balances the right treatment with her quality of life. In this video, Sheryl Crow talks with her surgeon about why she chose a conservative approach.
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Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in the United States, accounting for more than a quarter of all cancers in women. Approximately 2.5 million women in this country are breast cancer survivors, and an estimated 192,370 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in 2009. Breast cancer can also develop in men, but this is rare; the disease will be diagnosed in approximately 1,900 men in 2009.
The rate of new cases (known as incidence) of breast cancer varies according to race/ethnicity. The incidence is highest among white women and lowest among American Indian/Alaska Native women. However, the death (mortality) rate is highest among black women. This high rate is related to the greater number of black women (compared with white women) who have more advanced cancer at the time of diagnosis. Better use of breast cancer screening by women in minority populations would provide a greater chance for increased survival.