What Is The Recurrence Rate For Her2
- HER2-positive tumors tend to grow faster than tumors that do not express the HER2 protein. However, recurrence rates vary and depend upon more than simply the HER2 status of the tumor.
- Like other breast cancers, recurrence rates depend upon the extent of spread of the tumor at the time of diagnosis of the tumor along with other characteristics of the tumor.
- The development of anti-HER2 therapies has significantly improved the outlook for patients with HER2-positive breast cancer.
Grade Of Breast Cancer
The grade describes the appearance of the cancer cells.
- low grade the cells, although abnormal, appear to be growing slowly
- medium grade the cells look more abnormal than low-grade cells
- high grade the cells look even more abnormal and are more likely to grow quickly
Read further information:
Read further information about secondary breast cancer
Ductal Or Lobular Hyperplasia
Atypical lobular hyperplasia and atypical ductal hyperplasia are considered precancerous conditions. Atypical describes cells that look abnormal under a microscope, while hyperplasia describes an overgrowth of cells.
Breast tumors that have these characteristics are more likely to turn into cancer therefore, close monitoring or surgical excision is required to treat these conditions.
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What To Do If You Feel A Lump
Finding a breast lump can be upsetting, even if you know that most breast lumps arent cancerous. Because breast cancer is easier to treat before it spreads, its important to seek a diagnosis.
Heres what to do if you feel a lump:
- See a doctor: First things first, call a primary care medical professional or gynecologist if you have one. If you dont have a doctor you see regularly, contact a doctors office or clinic in your area. Make it clear that youve found a lump in your breast and you need a clinical exam.
- Keep in mind that a physical examination may not give you the answer: The doctor may also need to order a mammogram, an ultrasound, or an MRI. That doesnt mean you have breast cancer.
- Try to remain calm: Remind yourself theres a good chance that the lump is benign. Youre being proactive and doing the right thing by having it checked out.
- Follow up with the doctors office or clinic: Contact the doctors office or clinic to get your test results, understand what they mean, and find out what your next steps are.
- Prioritize your own health: Be persistent and diligent if you cant get an appointment or your concerns arent fully addressed, seek out another doctor.
Signs And Symptoms Of Breast Cancer In Men
Possible symptoms of breast cancer to watch for include:
- A lump or swelling, which is often painless
- Skin dimpling or puckering
- Redness or scaling of the nipple or breast skin
- Discharge from the nipple
Sometimes a breast cancer can spread to lymph nodes under the arm or around the collar bone and cause a lump or swelling there, even before the original tumor in the breast is large enough to be felt.
These changes aren’t always caused by cancer, but if you notice any breast changes, you should see a health care professional as soon as possible.
Our team is made up of doctors and oncology certified nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.
Burstein HJ, Harris JR, Morrow M. Ch. 79 – Malignant tumors of the breast. In: DeVita VT, Lawrence TS, Rosenberg SA, eds. DeVita, Hellman, and Rosenberg’sCancer: Principles and Practice of Oncology. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 2015.
Morrow M. Chapter 3: Physical Exam of the Breast. In: Harris JR, Lippman ME, Morrow M, Osborne CK, eds. Diseases of the Breast. 5th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health 2014.
Wolff AC, Domchek SM, Davidson NE et al. Ch 91 – Cancer of the Breast. In: Niederhuber JE, Armitage JO, Doroshow JH, Kastan MB, Tepper JE, eds. Abeloffs Clinical Oncology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier: 2014.
Last Revised: April 27, 2018
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Surprising Signs And Symptoms Of Breast Cancer
For American women, breast cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer after skin cancer. On average, one in eight women and one in 1,000 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetime.
Thanks to breast cancer awareness initiatives launched by charities including Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, most U.S. women and men know that if they, or a loved one, discover a lump in their breast, they should be screened for breast cancer. You may be surprised to learn theres a type of breast cancer called inflammatory breast cancer, accounting for less than 5% of all cases, that doesnt develop a lump. Instead, this type of cancer blocks the lymph vessels, causing fluids to back up and generating unusual symptoms including persistent breast itching, nipple discharge, and a mark that looks like an insect bite that doesnt go away.
Breast Cancer Signs And Symptoms
Knowing how your breasts normally look and feel is an important part of your breast health. Although having regular screening tests for breast cancer is important, mammograms do not find every breast cancer. This means it’s also important for you to know what your breasts normally look and feel like, so youll be aware of any changes in your breasts.
The most common symptom of breast cancer is a new lump or mass . A painless, hard mass that has irregular edges is more likely to be cancer, but breast cancers can be also soft, round, tender, or even painful.
Other possible symptoms of breast cancer include:
- Swelling of all or part of a breast
- Breast or nipple pain
- Nipple or breast skin that is red, dry, flaking, or thickened
- Nipple discharge
- Swollen lymph nodes under the arm or near the collar bone
Many of these symptoms can also be caused by benign breast conditions. Still, its important to have any new breast mass, lump, or other change checked by an experienced health care professional so the cause can be found and treated, if needed.
Remember that knowing what to look for does not take the place of having regular screening for breast cancer.Screening mammography can often help find breast cancer early, before any symptoms appear. Finding breast cancer early gives you a better chance of successful treatment.
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What If You Find A Lump
First, donât panic. Eighty percent of breast lumps arenât cancerous. They often turn out to be harmless cysts or tissue changes related to your menstrual cycle. But let your doctor know right away if you find anything unusual in your breast. If it is cancer, the earlier itâs found, the better. And if it isnât, testing can give you peace of mind.
What Are The Symptoms And Signs Of Breast Cancer
The most common symptoms of breast cancer include:
- Feeling a lump in the breast area, with or without pain
- Change in breast shape or size
- Dimple or puckering in breast
- A nipple turning inward into the breast
- Nipple discharge other than breast milk, especially if it is bloody
- Scaly, red, darkened or swollen skin in the breast area
- Itchy, scaly sore or rash on the nipple
- Dimple, pitted appearance or feel in the breast area
- Swollen or enlarged lymph nodes around the breast area, including the collarbone and armpits
Although these symptoms can be caused by other conditions, you should check with a doctor preferably a breast health specialist so they can make a definitive diagnosis.
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Note To Users Outside Of The United States
Further Tests For Breast Cancer
If a diagnosis of breast cancer is confirmed, more tests will be needed to determine the stage and grade of the cancer, and to work out the best method of treatment.
If your cancer was detected through the NHS Breast Screening Programme, you’ll have further tests in the screening centre before being referred for treatment.
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What Does Breast Cancer Look Like
In many cases, women spot signs of breast cancer outside of regular breast cancer screenings. In fact, paying attention to changes in your breasts during regular activities like showering or getting dressed, along with getting your annual mammogram if youre age 40 or over, is one of the best ways to increase your chances of finding breast cancer early, when its easiest to treat.
Any change you notice that is different to you, you should get it checked out, says Therese Bevers, M.D., medical director of MD Andersons Lyda Hill Cancer Prevention Center. Its always better to get something checked out and find its nothing than to ignore it.
Any subtle change in your breasts should be taken seriously, but here are some symptoms that might be a sign of breast cancer.
A Note About Sex And Gender
Sex and gender exist on spectrums. This article will use the terms male, female, or both to refer to sex assigned at birth. .
There are many different types of breast cancer.
Each form of breast cancer develops in a different part of the breast and can affect different tissue types.
Since many breast cancers cause no symptoms, people should attend regular screenings. This can help identify the disease in its early stages.
Below, we outline the types of breast cancer and their symptoms.
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What Could A Painful Lump In The Breast Mean
“Cancerous lumps can be painful,” says Dr. Santamaria. “But benign fibrocystic lumps, a fibroadenoma or a breast cyst typically hurt more than cancerous lumps.”
A breast cyst is a fluid-filled sac. It’s most common in premenopausal women. If the cyst is large or painful, your doctor can drain the fluid. It’s not common for a breast cancer lump to contain fluid, but it is possible.
Signs Of Inflammatory Breast Cancer
Another type of breast cancer, known as inflammatory breast cancer , will only rarely cause lumps or symptoms. This type of breast cancer does not show up on a mammogram. Symptoms of inflammatory breast cancer may include:
- Red, swollen, itchy breast
- Tenderness of the breast when touched
- A pitted or ridged appearance of the surface of the breast
- Aching, burning, heaviness in one breast
- One breast that is significantly larger than the other breast
- A nipple that faces inward
- Swollen lymph nodes under the arm
- Swollen lymph nodes above the collarbone
- Other symptoms that do not go away after you take a course of antibiotics
It is important to remember that several other conditions besides cancer can cause these changes. Eczema can cause changes to the texture of the skin on your breasts, for example, and many illnesses can cause swollen lymph nodes. Breasts may change size during your menstrual cycle, inverted or flat nipples throughout life are common, and milk leaks are very normal during pregnancy or shortly after you have had a baby.
If you notice changes in the size of only one breast, skin changes not associated with eczema, changes in the size or shape of only one breast, or have nipple discharge when you are not pregnant or during postpartum, however, you should seek a medical opinion. Other signs to look for are nipples that invert or flatten suddenly or a feeling of warmth inside your breast.
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Living With Breast Cancer
Being diagnosed with breast cancer can affect daily life in many ways, depending on what stage it’s at and what treatment you’re having.
How women cope with their diagnosis and treatment varies from person to person. You can be reassured that there are several forms of support available, if you need it. For example:
- your family and friends can be a powerful support system
- you can communicate with other people in the same situation
- find out as much as possible about your condition
- don’t try to do too much or overexert yourself
- make time for yourself
Read more about breast screening
Stage 4 Inflammatory Breast Cancer Treatment
Cancer thats spread to more distant areas of the body is typically treated using one or a combination of the systemic therapies mentioned above. These include:
Its unclear exactly what causes IBC. In general, cancer develops due to genetic changes. These can happen due to a variety of factors, such as:
- genetic changes inherited from your parents
- irregularities that naturally occur during cell division
- damage to DNA through environmental exposures
Sometimes gene mutations that are associated with cell growth and division can occur. When this happens, cells can grow and divide out of control.
In IBC, cells in the breast ducts or lobules begin to rapidly grow and divide. As cancer cells build up, they block the lymph vessels in the skin of the breast. This leads to the redness, swelling, and dimpling associated with IBC.
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Symptom Signature Of Breast Cancer Individual Symptoms
A total of 2316/2783 of symptomatic women with breast cancer were included in the analysis . Among them, 2543 symptoms were recorded, averaging 1.1 symptoms per woman. A total of 56 distinct presenting symptoms were reported in the study population , in 95 unique phenotypes. Breast lump was the most common symptom, recorded in about four-fifths of all women . The next most commonly reported presenting symptoms were nipple abnormalities , breast pain , and breast skin abnormalities .
Will Lumps In The Breast Go Away
“Lumps can change in size go up and down,” says Dr. Santamaria. “A lot of women have lumpy, bumpy breasts and experience changes with their monthly cycle.”
These changes with your period are usually not cancer. “Because of hormonal fluctuations, the lumps grow during the cycle and then deflate after the period is over. That’s normal. The medical term for this is fibrocystic breast changes.” The same condition can also come with breast heaviness, pain or swelling. There are many different manifestations of this condition some women have a lot of cysts and growths.
Fibrocystic changes can affect women in their 20s to their 40s. Typically the lumps stop when the woman reaches menopause.
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Breast Thickening Or Pain
Your breast may feel thicker, or you may feel pain in part or all of it, per the CDC. Both symptoms are often signs of a less serious conditionbirth control pills may make breasts denser, and fibrosis can cause pain, especially around a persons period, per the NCI. But talk to a healthcare provider to rule out cancer.
Experiencing any of these changes can be scary, but its important to remember that most arent due to breast cancer. And if you get a diagnosis, know there are many treatment options already available, with more in the works. Just make sure to see a healthcare provider ASAPearly diagnosis and treatment are crucial for a better outcome.
Treating Metastatic Breast Cancer
When treating metastatic breast cancer, the goal is to help minimize or eliminate symptoms and lengthen your life without sacrificing your quality of life.
Breast cancer treatment depends on many factors, such as the type of breast cancer, previous treatments, and your overall health. Another important factor is where the cancer has spread and whether the cancer has spread to multiple locations.
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Is Breast Cancer Preventable
Walk The Walk stated that around 40 percent of cancers are preventable equating to 144,000 cases each year.
To help minimise your risk of cancer, the charity recommend eating a healthy diet.
In addition to consuming a good amount of vitamins and minerals, being more active every day is also encouraged.
The Breast Cancer Prevention charity added that to minimise your risk you should drink no or little alcohol.
Moreover, people are advised not to smoke taking in all of these factors, you can reduce your risk of disease.
Added benefits include: better sleep, better physical and mental health, and a lower risk of heart problems.
Certain hormone disrupting chemicals can mimic the natural hormone oestrogen which increases the rate of cell division, added the Breast Cancer Prevention charity.
The more a cell divides the more likely mutations will occur and accumulate, including those associated with breast cancer.
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Are There Different Types Of Breast Cancer
The breasts are made of fat, glands, and connective tissue. The breast has several lobes, which split into lobules that end in the milk glands. Tiny ducts run from the many tiny glands, connect together, and end in the nipple.
- These ducts are where 80% of breast cancers occur. Ductal cancer is breast cancer that arises in the ducts.
- Cancer developing in the lobules is termed lobular cancer. About 10%-15% of breast cancers are of this type.
- Other less common types of breast cancer include inflammatory breast cancer, medullary cancer, phyllodes tumor, angiosarcoma, mucinous carcinoma, mixed tumors, and a type of cancer involving the nipple termed Pagets disease.
Precancerous changes, called in situ changes, are common.
- In situ is Latin for in place or in site and means that the changes havent spread from where they started .
- Ductal carcinoma in situ is the medical term for in situ changes that occur in the ducts. Routine mammography may identify DCIS.
- Lobular carcinoma in situ refers to abnormal-appearing cells in the milk-producing lobules of the breast. This is considered a non-cancerous condition that increases a womans risk for breast cancer.
When cancers spread into the surrounding tissues, they are termed infiltrating cancers. Cancers spreading from the ducts into adjacent spaces are termed infiltrating ductal carcinomas. Cancers spreading from the lobules are infiltrating lobular carcinomas.
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