Breast Cancer Support And Resources
There are many resources and support groups for breast cancer survivors. Theres no obligation to stick with a group. You can try it out and move on whenever youre ready. You might be surprised to learn that you have a lot to offer others as well.
If you like having information at your fingertips, download the free Breast Cancer Healthline app. The app lets you connect with others who have a similar diagnosis and understand what youre going through.
I Am Stage 1 Grade 2 Er/pr + Her2
I am a 47yr and pre-menopausal. I was diagnosed 1/27/11 with ILC, further testing revealed multiple locations in the same breast of invasive lobular carcinoma. Tumors were 1.2cm, .8cm, and .5cm. I had 0/7 nodes positive. I am BRAC 1& 2-, Oncotypedx score 25. I had a bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction started on 3/2. Today was my first appt. with the Oncologist. His recommendation is 4 doses of TC every 3 weeks, followed by Tamoxifen for 5 years, based on the fact that together the tumors represented 2.5 cm of cancer. He stated that Oncotype score just solidified his feelings that I would benefit from chemo. I had really hoped not to need chemo. Although I want to do everything I can to make sure this doesn’t come back, I am afraid. My mother had breast cancer, which was much more invasive than mine. She participated in a clinical trial in 1994, and recieved high doses of AC. Unfortunately she developed AML, 2 yrs after her chemo treatment. I know first hand that chemo has risks, but I am hoping to decide what to do this weekend.
Staging And Management Of The Axilla
It is often assumed that preoperative imaging is useful in selecting patients undergoing BCT who require axillary dissection. However, the clinical question has shifted from the identification of any nodal metastases to identification of patients with 3 or more nodal metastases who are not candidates for sentinel node biopsy alone, and current imaging modalities do not reliably make this distinction. Pilewskie at al examined the utility of preoperative imaging in predicting the need for additional axillary surgery in 425 patients with clinical T1-2 N0 tumors and 1 or 2 positive sentinel nodes. Among patients with abnormal axillary nodes identified by mammogram, axillary ultrasound, or MRI, 71% did not require ALND using Z0011 criteria. Even among patients with a needle biopsy demonstrating nodal metastases, only 45% required ALND. Thus, preoperative axillary imaging in clinically node-negative patients should be reserved for those undergoing mastectomy where the finding of any nodal disease is an indication for ALND or preoperative chemotherapy to downstage the axilla.
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Treating Stage Iii Breast Cancer
In stage III breast cancer, the tumor is large or growing into nearby tissues , or the cancer has spread to many nearby lymph nodes.
If you have inflammatory breast cancer: Stage III cancers also include some inflammatory breast cancers that have not spread beyond nearby lymph nodes. Treatment of these cancers can be slightly different from the treatment of other stage III breast cancers. You can find more details in our section about treatment for inflammatory breast cancer.
There are two main approaches to treating stage III breast cancer:
What Are The Complications Of Breast Cancer Recurrence
Breast cancer that comes back can be harder to treat. The same therapy isnt always effective again. Tumors can develop a tolerance to certain treatments like chemotherapy. Your healthcare provider will try other therapies. You may be able to try drugs under development in clinical trials.
If breast cancer spreads to other parts of the body, your healthcare providers still treat it like breast cancer. For instance, breast cancer cells that move to the lungs cause breast cancer in the lungs not lung cancer. Metastatic breast cancer is more difficult to treat than cancer in only one part of the body.
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Grade 3 Breast Cancer
Just looking for info on other peoples treatment. I’m 39, I’ve just had 2nd surgery to remove 8mm IDC as the margins aren’t clear – hopefully will be now . It is grade 3 but luckily no lymph nodes involved .
My consultant says I won’t need chemo as there were no lymph nodes with cancer in them, but I’ve been reading some things that in younger women with grade 3, oncology may suggest chemo? I haven’t had my appointment with oncology yet.
Anyone else with similar – would love to hear your story/treatment.
Treatment For Stage 3 Breast Cancer
Treatment for people with stage 3 breast cancer includes chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation. Typically, doctors administer the chemotherapy before performing the surgery in an attempt to shrink a tumor.
People with stage 3 breast cancer will probably need radiation therapy to kill off any remaining cancer cells. Doctors may also recommend hormone therapy, as well as additional targeted therapies, if necessary.
Neoadjuvant And Adjuvant Systemic Therapy
For women who have a hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, most doctors will recommend hormone therapy as an adjuvant treatment, no matter how small the tumor is. Women with tumors larger than 0.5 cm across may be more likely to benefit from it. Hormone therapy is typically given for at least 5 years.
If the tumor is larger than 1 cm across, chemo after surgery is sometimes recommended. A woman’s age when she is diagnosed may help in deciding if chemo should be offered or not. Some doctors may suggest chemo for smaller tumors as well, especially if they have any unfavorable features .
After surgery, some women with HER2-positive cancers will be treated with trastuzumab for up to 1 year.
Many women with HER2-positive cancers will be treated with trastuzumab followed by surgery and more trastuzumab for up to 1 year. If after neoadjuvant therapy, residual cancer is found during surgery, trastuzumab may be changed to a different drug, called ado-trastuzumab emtansine, which is given every 3 weeks for 14 doses. If hormone receptor-positive cancer is found in the lymph nodes, your doctor might recommend one year of trastuzumab followed by additional treatment with an oral drug called neratinib for 1 year.
What Are The Risks Of Chemotherapy
Different chemotherapy medicines tend to cause different side effects. Many women do not have problems with these side effects, while other women are bothered a lot. There are other medicines you can take to treat the side effects of chemo.
Talk to your doctor about the type of chemotherapy medicine that he or she is planning to give you. Ask about any side effects that the chemo may cause.
Short-term side effects can include:
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Hair thinning or hair loss.
- Mouth sores.
- Increased chance of bruising, bleeding, and infection.
- Memory and concentration problems.
Long-term side effects of chemotherapy can include:
- Early menopause, which means not being able to have children anymore. It also can include symptoms like hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and thinning bones .
- Concentration problems that may last for many months after your treatments are finished.
- In rare cases, heart damage and a higher risk of other types of cancers, such as leukemia.
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How Is Breast Cancer Recurrence Managed Or Treated
Your treatment depends on the type of cancer recurrence, as well as past treatments. If cancer develops in a reconstructed breast, your surgeon may want to remove the breast implant or skin flap.
Treatments for local and regional breast cancer recurrence may include:
- Mastectomy: Your surgeon removes the affected breast and sometimes lymph nodes.
- Chemotherapy:Chemotherapy circulates in blood, killing cancer cells.
- Hormone therapy:Tamoxifen and other hormone therapies treat cancers that thrive on estrogen .
- Immunotherapy:Immunotherapy engages your bodys immune system to fight cancer.
- Radiation therapy: High-energy X-ray beams damage and destroy cancer cells.
- Targeted therapy: Treatments target specific cancer cell genes or proteins.
The Types Of Radiotherapy
The type of radiotherapy you have will depend on the type of breast cancer and the type of surgery you have. Some women may not need to have radiotherapy at all.
Types of radiotherapy include:
- breast radiotherapy after breast-conserving surgery, radiation is applied to the whole of the remaining breast tissue
- chest-wall radiotherapy after a mastectomy, radiotherapy is applied to the chest wall
- breast boost some women may be offered a boost of high-dose radiotherapy in the area where the cancer was removed however, this may affect the appearance of your breast, particularly if you have large breasts, and can sometimes have other side effects, including hardening of breast tissue
- radiotherapy to the lymph nodes where radiotherapy is aimed at the armpit and the surrounding area to kill any cancer that may be in the lymph nodes
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What Type Of Drug Treatment Might I Get
Most women with breast cancer in stages I to III will get some kind of drug therapy as part of their treatment. This may include:
- Hormone therapy
- HER2 targeted drugs, such as trastuzumab and pertuzumab
- Some combination of these
The types of drugs that might work best depend on the tumors hormone receptor status, HER2 status, and other factors.
How Treatment Can Impact Survival Of Early Stage Breast Cancer
In most cases, the earlier breast cancer is first diagnosed and treated, the better the chance of survival. Cancer cells often become more difficult to treat and may develop drug resistance once they spread. The aim of treatment for Stage 1 and 2 breast cancer is to remove the breast cancer, and any other cancer cells that remain in the breast, armpit or other parts of the body but cannot be detected. Having treatment at this stage can also reduce the risk of the cancer coming back.
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Outlook By Hr And Her2 Status
Outlook also varies based on tumor characteristics, such as subtype.
For example, here are the 5-year relative survival rates for different combinations of HR and HER2 status:
- 92% for HR-positive, HER2-negative cancer
- 89% for HR-positive, HER2-positive cancer
- 83% for HR-negative, HER2-positive cancer
- 77% for HR-negative, HER2-negative cancer
I’m Still Here And Doing Great
I was diagnosed and treated in 2010. I’m doing great, no recurrence or new cancer. I have a mammogram once a year, and breast MRI once a year, so I am looked at every 6 months. I take Tamoxifen. Now see my med onc only every 6 months. In another year, I believe I will see her only yearly and I don’t know if the breast MRI will continue or not. We’ll cross that bridge when I’m there.
Unlike many others, I feel absolutely fabulous. I feel better than I did prior to diagnosis and I’m now 67 years old. I have made some major lifestyle changes. I exercise 5 X a week for at least an hour. I think this has been my greatest accomplishment andI chalk it up to why I feel so good. I seldom have alcohol anymore and my diet is very healthy – not because of the breast cancer thing, but for general health issues and I am very happy with what I eat. I’ve done this even though my husband adamantly refuses to do anything healthy . I recently exercised myself out of one of my blood pressure medications and I am so happy about that.
Good luck in your decision and no, of course, I don’t mind you asking – especially when I can give you positive feedback. Oh, chemotherapy is not fun, but initial chemotherapy does have an ending date and it is doable. I think I had every side effect known and then some they didn’t tell me about, but I still remember thinking during treatment “this isn’t so bad”. Those of us who did it, are here to support you if you do it.
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Causes Of Triple Negative Breast Cancer
The risk factors for triple negative breast cancer are not clear. Some breast cancers depend on hormones to grow. These can be linked with risk factors to do with hormones and having children. But triple negative breast cancer does not seem to share these risk factors.
Most women with triple negative breast cancer have no strong history of breast cancer in their family . But some women with triple negative breast cancer have an altered BRCA1 gene. This will have been inherited from a parent.
An altered BRCA 1 gene can cause breast cancer to run in families. Most breast cancers caused by BRCA1 are triple negative.
If you have triple negative breast cancer, you may be offered genetic testing. This is even if you do not have a family history of breast cancer. Your cancer doctor or breast care nurse can explain more about this to you.
The tests are the same as for any type of breast cancer. You usually have a:
A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast.
- Ultrasound scan
An ultrasound scan uses sound waves to produce a picture of the breast tissue and the lymph nodes in the armpit.
- Breast biopsy
When you have a breast biopsy, your cancer doctor or breast care nurse takes small samples of cells or tissue from your breast. The samples are looked at under a microscope to check for cancer cells. They also do other tests to find out if the cells have receptors for hormones, or for HER2.
The staging and grading is the same as for other types of breast cancer.
Treatment For Stage 1 Breast Cancer
Doctors can offer a variety of treatment options for stage 1 breast cancer, although surgery is the primary treatment.
A lumpectomy or mastectomy are both viable surgical options for people with stage 1 breast cancer. A doctor will decide what surgery is most appropriate depending on the location of the primary tumor, how large it is, the size of the breast, family history, genetics, and the persons preference.
Radiation therapy is a standard treatment for stage 1 breast cancer. However, a doctor may not recommend radiation therapy for people over 70 years old, particularly if hormone therapy is suitable.
If the breast cancer is ER+ or PR+, hormone therapy may be effective. Hormone therapy works by preventing the growth of estrogen, which helps cancer grow. Hormone therapy can reach cancer cells in the breast as well as other areas of the body and reduces the risk of the cancer coming back.
Before recommending chemotherapy, a doctor will test to see whether the cancer is hormone receptive.
If the test results show that the cancer is not receptive to estrogen and progesterone or to another protein called human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 , it is known as triple-negative breast cancer .
Hormone therapy is ineffective against this cancer type, and people who have TNBC will usually need chemotherapy.
Stage 2A breast cancer is an invasive cancer where:
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Racial Inequity And Outlook
Racial inequities may also affect a persons outlook with breast cancer.
For example, in the U.S., the 5-year relative survival rate is around 92% for white women but 83% for Black women.
Inequities in healthcare are likely one reason behind this difference, according to the ACS.
Breast cancer incidence differs with age. Here are the percentages of people with breast cancer who died in the U.S. in 2019, categorized by age:
- under age 40 years: 3%
- 4049 years: 8%
Receiving a cancer diagnosis can be frightening and overwhelming. However, it is important to get as much information as possible about the cancer itself, the next steps, and the treatment options available.
If You Are Stage 1 Er/pr+ Her
|Mar 20, 2011 – 2:01 am
I will see my medical oncologist for the first time in about 2 weeks. My BS has prepared us for the possibility that chemo will be suggested. My diagnosis is IDC, stage 1, grade 3 and the tumor was a little over 1 cm. My 7 nodes removed were clean, however my margins weren’t clear and I had a re-excision last week, making them now clear. I am ER/PR+ and HER2-. I will have radiation and am planning on hormone therapy in the near future, but his suggestion of POSSIBLE chemo took me a bit by surprise. So if your stats are similar or the same and you had or will have chemo and don’t mind sharing, can you tell me why?
My cancer diagnosis is similar. I am small chested so we were advised to have a radical mastectomy. I did.Because my margins were not clear, I immediately went to radiation.Now, I am doing 4 rounds of Taxotere and Cytoxin. It increases my odds of cure by a small margin, but one worth taking. All medical people advising me said, “you get this one chance at a cure. If you don’t do chemo now and the cancer shows up else where, the chemo may be much less successful. Better to prevent matastisis.” So I followed their advice.
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