Unfortunately, breast cancer cannot be prevented, with the exact meaning of the word. However, through palpation, mammography, and ultrasound, breast cancer can be detected early on (early diagnosis). This is very important because it gives us the potential for better management of the medical treatment and thus in many cases can “save lives”.
Factors that can be altered to lower the risk of development breast cancer are breast-feeding, full term pregnancy at young age (<30 yr), reduced alcohol intake, avoidance of increased body weight entering menopause and detection of in situ breast cancer through mammography. High-risk women can lower their risk of breast cancer with pharmacological treatment (eg. Tamoxifen, raloxifen, aromatase inhibitors).
As for the diagnostic methods, in addition to the clinical examination and imaging (mammography, ultrasound and magnetic tomography-MRI), other diagnostic tests include fine needle aspiration (FNA), and tru-cut/core biopsy.