SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

In the U.S. 9 percent of women diagnosed with breast cancer are under the age of 45. Of that 9 percent, the cancer is more likely to be found at a later stage and is often more aggressive and difficult to treat.

Dr. Grace Makari-Judson is the Director of Cancers Service at Baystate Health, she says breast cancer at this age is normally detected by symptoms. “Because monography isn’t started until after the age of 40, most of these cancers are diagnosed because a lump is noticed. Cancer in young women tends to be larger and often involves lymph nodes.”

Women diagnosed with breast cancer under the age of 45 are likely to experience unique issues, including concerns over body image, finances, and fertility. Dr. Makari Judson says those with a close relative diagnosed with breast cancer should speak with a doctor.

“Know your family history and if appropriate, have genetic testing. When we identify people with hereditary susceptibility it’s a chance to be proactive about your health. to be able to identify personalized strategies for screening and reducing the risk of cancer.” Dr. Makari-Judson, Director of Cancer Services at Baystate Health

According to the CDC, those who have had radiation therapy to the chest or breasts before age 30 have a higher risk of getting breast cancer later in life.