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High density of male breast cancer raises eyebrows

Category: Breast

A man with breast cancer claims to have identified dozens of other men with the disease, all of whom once lived at a Marine Corps base in North Carolina.

Make Partain, a 41-year-old who survived the cancer, which is extremely rare in men, plans to be heard before the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs this week when the committee holds a hearing on contamination at U.S. military centers, the St. Petersburg Times reports.

Some researchers believe the military base in question may have exposed Marines to contaminated water.

Partain, who was born at the Marine Corp installation Camp Lejeune, says that at least 39 other men who lived at the facility have developed male breast cancer. "This is statistically unheard of. We've got a cancer cluster that defies explanation," he told the news source.

Indeed, a man has just a 1-in-1,000 lifetime chance of getting male breast cancer and only 1,900 a year are diagnosed with the disease, according to the American Cancer Society.

Dr. Ann Aschengrau, an epidemiologist at the Boston University School of Public Health said she would expect two male breast cancer cases in a population of 100,000 people.

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