Men have a small amount of non-functioning breast tissue which is mostly found behind the nipple.
Just like women, breast cancer in men can develop as a malignant tumour which starts in the cells of the breast.
It’s not yet known what causes it, but research suggests men are more at risk as they get older, if they have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, if they have been exposed to radiation, have certain testicular conditions, or high levels of oestrogen.
The chance of getting male breast cancer is also increased by a rare genetic condition in men, called Klinefelter’s syndrome, as well as inherited changes (mutations) in specific genes, including the breast cancer-associated BRCA-2 gene
Early breast cancer is cancer that is contained in the breast and may or may not have spread to the lymph nodes in the breast or armpit. Some cancer cells may have spread outside the breast and armpit area but cannot be detected.
It is not know exactly how long breast cancer takes to develop, but it usually grows slowly. It can be several years before a lump or thickening can be felt, although there can be other symptoms of breast cancer.