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Triple Negative Breast Cancer Survival Rate

What Is The Survival Rate Of Triple

New Treatment Shows Promise For Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Patients

What is the survival rate of triple-negative breast cancer?

SEER Stage
All stages combined 77%

Is triple-negative breast cancer more serious? Triple-negative breast cancer accounts for about 10% to 20% of all breast cancer cases. Every cancer diagnosis is unique, but in general, triple-negative breast cancer is a more aggressive type of tumor with a faster growth rate, higher risk of metastasis and recurrence risk.

Is triple-negative breast cancer curable? Its one of the most challenging breast cancers to treat. But researchers are making steady progress toward more effective treatments. Overall, 77% of women who have triple negative breast cancer are alive five years after diagnosis.

What does a triple negative mean with breast cancer? What Is Triple-Negative Breast Cancer? Triple-negative breast cancer is a kind of breast cancer that does not have any of the receptors that are commonly found in breast cancer. Think of cancer cells as a house. The front door may have three kinds of locks, called receptors One is for the female hormone estrogen.

Is Stage 4 Triple Negative Breast Cancer Curable

“Unfortunately, Stage 4 triple negative breast cancer has a dismal prognosis, with the median overall survival being only about 13 months. However, a case report from 2019 describes a 68 year old patient with metastatic TNBC that achieved a long-term, complete remission from the disease. The patient was 7 years out from her diagnosis at the time. While cases like this are possible, more clinical trials are required to improve the survival rate of the disease. To find active triple negative breast cancer clinical trials in your area, you can use Power to search by condition, treatment, or location.” – Anonymous Online Contributor

Can Tnbc Be Prevented

Researchers dont know all the factors that cause triple negative breast cancer. They have identified the BRAC1 gene mutation as one potential cause for triple negative breast cancer. Unfortunately, you cant prevent BRAC1 because you inherit this gene mutation from your parents.

But there are steps that help prevent breast cancers, including TNBC:

  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Exercise on a regular basis.
  • Know your family medical history.
  • Monitor your breast health. Studies show 95% of women whose breast cancer was treated before it could spread were alive four years after diagnosis.
  • Talk to your healthcare provider about genetic testing for the BRCA gene if you have a family history of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, pancreatic or prostate cancer. If you have the BRCA gene, there are steps you can take to prevent breast cancer.

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Do I Need Genetic Counseling And Testing

Your doctor may recommend that you see a genetic counselor. Thats someone who talks to you about any history of cancer in your family to find out if you have a higher risk for getting breast cancer. For example, people of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage have a higher risk of inherited genetic changes that may cause breast cancers, including triple-negative breast cancer. The counselor may recommend that you get a genetic test.

If you have a higher risk of getting breast cancer, your doctor may talk about ways to manage your risk. You may also have a higher risk of getting other cancers such as ovarian cancer, and your family may have a higher risk. Thats something you would talk with the genetic counselor about.

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I Have Triple Negative Breast Cancer What Can I Do To Help Myself

Figure 3 from Outcomes of Triple

You already took the first step when you decided to help yourself. Many times cancer makes people feel as if theyve lost control of their lives. Committing to self-care is one way to overcome that feeling. Here are some things you can do during and after your treatment:

  • Triple negative breast cancer is a rare and often misunderstood illness. Many people dont realize this cancer cant be treated the same as other breast cancers. As a result, you might feel isolated and alone with your cancer. If that happens, your healthcare provider can direct you to TNBC support groups and programs where you can talk to people who understand your experience.
  • Youll probably need or want help while youre going through treatment. Your friends and family likely are anxious to do what they can. Let them know how they can help you.
  • If you will need cancer surgery, ask your healthcare provider what to expect immediately after surgery and any follow-up treatment. Knowing what to expect will help you focus on what you can control rather than what you cant control.
  • Cancer is stressful. You might find activities such as meditation, relaxation exercises or deep breathing exercises help to ease your stress.
  • Chemotherapy treatments might affect your appetite. Try to eat a healthy diet, and talk to a nutritionist if you’re having trouble eating.
  • Radiation treatment can leave you feeling exhausted. Plan to rest as much as possible during your treatment.

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What Are Symptoms Of Triple Negative Breast Cancer

TNBC symptoms are the same as other common breast cancers. And many breast cancer symptoms are similar to other less serious conditions. That means having certain symptom doesnt mean you have breast cancer. Possible breast cancer symptoms include:

  • A new lump or mass.
  • Swelling in all or part of a breast.
  • Dimpled skin.
  • Nipple retraction, when your nipple turns inward.
  • Nipple or breast skin thats dry, flaking, thickened or red.
  • Nipple discharge that is not breast milk.
  • Swollen lymph nodes. This symptom happens when breast cancer spreads to the lymph nodes under your arm or near your collarbone.

Sociodemographic And Clinical Characteristics Of Tnbc Patients

We enrolled 152 patients aged 26-85, median age 58 years , just over two-thirds of them menopausal. In routine medical records, family history data were lacking in a high percentage of cases, i.e. 42 for any cancer and 43 for BC. We kept these data in descriptive Table 1, but did not interpret them. In patients for whom we had properly collected data, 18/109 had a positive family history of BC. Patients with a positive family history of BC were younger, median age 43 years compared to patients without family BC, median age 57 years. The vast majority of patients had ductal invasive carcinoma with a median tumor size of 2.2 cm, 62 with positive lymph nodes, 124 with grade III tumor, and median Ki67 proliferation index 57 . Just over one-third of patients underwent radical surgery , and almost all of them underwent axillary dissection. Adjuvant chemotherapy was used in 130/148 patients, in 114/128 cases with anthracyclines or a combination of anthracyclines and taxanes. A total of 103/140 patients were treated with adjuvant radiotherapy. None of the patients was treated with the neoadjuvant approach.

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Diagnosing Triple Negative Breast Cancer

In many women the cancer is found during breast screening. But symptoms such as a breast lump can be a sign of breast cancer. So it is important to get any symptoms checked by your doctor.

If you have symptoms and see your GP they refer you to a specialist breast clinic. At the breast clinic the doctor or breast care nurse takes your medical history and examines your breasts. They also feel for any swollen lymph nodes under your arms and at the base of your neck.

You have some of the following tests:

  • a mammogram
  • an ultrasound
  • a biopsy your doctor or nurse take a small sample of cells or tissue from your breast to look at under a microscope

Depending on your age and whether other family members have had breast cancer, your doctor might refer you for gene testing. This is to find out if there is a fault in the BRCA cancer gene.

Does Triple Negative Breast Cancer Return With A Complete Response

Major Breakthrough In Treating Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

Triple negative breast cancer can return with a pathologic complete response, but the rates of disease-free survival and overall survival improve with the use of chemotherapy before surgery, which is also known as neoadjuvant chemotherapy. While disease-free survival is how long someone lives without the cancer recurring, overall survival is how long they live whether or not the cancer recurs. You can find the most recent triple negative breast cancer clinical trials by using Power, which allows you to search trials tailored to your condition, location, and ideal treatment.” – Anonymous Online Contributor

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Success Among Siteman Triple

In 2016, when Celina Campbell found a quarter-sized lump in her breast, she assumed it was just a swollen area due to a minor injury. However, breast cancer runs in Celinas family and her cousin had just received a TNBC diagnosis. Because of this, she began to suspect the lump could be cancer. After following up with a breast surgeon, it was indeed confirmed that Celina, too, had TNBC.

While triple-negative breast cancer treatment was very emotionally and physically draining, Celina remained determined to overcome her diagnosis. And, after eight sessions of chemotherapy, no more lump could be found. Now, six years later, Celina lives a full life and her cancer is considered fully cured.

Throughout her cancer journey, Celina received the most exceptional care and support from Sitemans breast cancer specialist team. Former Washington University medical oncologist William Popovic, MD, laid out a thorough and personalized treatment plan for Celina, putting her at ease with his warm demeanor and genuine concern. All of the staff dedicated themselves fully to Celinas journey, always working to help her understand her cancer and her treatment. The expertise, commitment and compassion of Washington University breast cancer specialists at Siteman allowed Celina to take charge of her life and to become an incredible inspiration to other TNBC patients.

What Is The Recurrence Rate Of Triple

A 2019 study found that roughly 40% of people with stage 1 to stage 3 TNBC will see their cancer return after standard treatment. The remaining 60% will have long-term survival without recurrence.

The outcomes of treatment vary. About 42% of those with this form of cancer will have a rapid relapse after standard treatment. This recurrence typically occurs within the first 23 years following the initial diagnosis.

It is not currently possible to predict who will experience a relapse in their cancer, even if they have had intensive chemotherapy.

On average,

Triple-negative breast cancer can recur in various areas of the body and at local, regional, and distant levels:

  • Local means that the cancer remains in the breast and has not spread.
  • Regional is when the cancer spreads from the breast to lymph nodes and other structures located nearby.
  • Distant refers to cancer that has spread far from the breast to other organs, such as the liver or lungs.

A 2017 study examined the patterns of recurrence among 1,930 people with TNBC. The researchers divided the patients into two age groups: 15% were younger than 40 years at the time of their diagnosis, and 85% were 40 years or older.

The researchers found only a small difference between the two groups in terms of recurrence of the cancer on the local level: 6% of those under 40 versus 5% of those aged 40 or above.

The same study found that the rate of regional recurrence was 2% for both groups.

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Triple Negative Breast Cancer Recurrence & Survival Data

Patient & treatment characteristics Likelihood of outcomeTriple negative breast cancer with standard treatment

  • Standard of care treatment 72% to 77% five-year progression-free survival

Degree of pathologic response after neoadjuvant chemotherapy

  • Pathologic complete response or minimal residual cancer burden 85% to 92% five-year progression-free survival
  • Moderate residual cancer burden 68% five-year progression-free survival
  • Extensive residual cancer burden 28% five-year progression-free survival
  • Residual Stage II/III disease 57% five-year distant progression-free survival

Type of surgery

  • Early-stage disease. Breast conserving treatment 87% to 94% five-year distant progression-free survival
  • Early-stage disease. Mastectomy 80% to 85% five-year distant progression-free survival

BRCA mutation status

  • BRCA1 mutation carrier 82% 2.5-year progression-free survival
  • BRCA2 mutation carrier 71% 2.5-year progression-free survival
  • No harmful BRCA mutation 74% 2.5-year progression-free survival

Lobular breast cancer

Ethnicity – U.S. population

  • Non-hispanic black 79% three-year overall survival
  • Non-hispanic white 83% three-year overall survival
  • Hispanic 86% three-year overall survival
  • Asian American 87% three-year overall survival

Old age at diagnosis

What Is The Survival Rate For Triple Negative Breast Cancer

Evaluation of Triple

Survival rates are a way to discuss the prognosis and outlook of a cancer diagnosis. The number most frequently mentioned is 5-year survival. Many patients live much longer, and some die earlier from causes other than breast cancer. With a constant change and improvement in therapies, these numbers also change. Current 5-year survival statistics are based on patients who were diagnosed at least 5 years ago and may have received different therapies than are available today.

Below are the statistics from the National Cancer Instituteâs SEER database for survival of all patients with breast cancer, by tumor stage:


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What Does Triple Negative Breast Cancer Look Like On Ultrasound

“On ultrasound, triple negative breast cancer frequently presents as an oval or round mass shape. Compared to non-TNBC cancers, it can often look like lesions with benign morphologies. Therefore, it is important that breast lesions are evaluated thoroughly for diagnostic accuracy. If you are looking to join a triple negative breast cancer clinical trial, Power can help you search recent trials by condition, treatment, or location.” – Anonymous Online Contributor

Risk Factors For Triple Negative Early Breast Cancer

Anyone can get triple negative breast cancer, however there are some things that increase a persons risk.

Having an inherited BRCA mutation

Everyone has BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. These genes normally prevent cancers from developing. However if there is a fault, called a mutation, in one of these genes, it can increase a persons risk of developing breast cancer and other cancers including ovarian cancer and prostate cancer in men. These gene mutations can be passed down through families.

About 5-10% of all people diagnosed with breast cancer have an inherited BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation.

A BRCA1 mutation is associated with a higher risk for triple negative breast cancer. Not all breast cancers caused by BRCA mutations are triple negative, however, and not all triple negative breast cancers are caused by inherited BRCA mutations.

BRCA2 mutations are more likely to be present in oestrogen receptor positive breast cancer.

If you have a strong family history of breast and/or ovarian cancer , it is possible that you and your relatives could carry a BRCA mutation. For more information on breast cancer and family history, visit thebreast cancer in the family section of this website.

Being premenopausal

Premenopausal women have a higher rate of triple negative breast cancer than postmenopausal women. Scientists do not yet understand why this is the case, however research is currently underway in this area.

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Basal Cell Breast Cancer

Basal cell breast cancer is a type of breast cancer with a clear pattern of changes in proteins in the cells.

Cancer doctors recognise basal cell breast cancer when they examine the cancer cells under a microscope. It is often linked with triple negative breast cancer.

Basal cell breast cancers are usually triple negative. And most triple negative breast cancers are basal cell cancers. They are similar types of breast cancer, but not exactly the same.

See also

The symptoms of triple negative breast cancer are the same as for other breast cancer types.

See also

Is Triple Negative Breast Cancer A Death Sentence

How a triple-negative breast cancer survivor became cancer-free

Triple negative breast cancer is not a death sentence, as many treatments have allowed patients to thrive after being diagnosed. The disease is also particularly sensitive to chemotherapy, and clinical trials are available when standard treatments are ineffective. Power makes it easy to find triple negative breast cancer clinical trials tailored to your condition, treatment, or location.” – Anonymous Online Contributor

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What Questions Should I Ask My Doctor

You will have lots of questions about your cancer, starting with your diagnosis. Here are some basic questions you might ask:

  • What is triple negative breast cancer?
  • How do you know my cancer is triple negative breast cancer?
  • Why did I get this cancer?
  • Do I need genetic testing?
  • Has my breast cancer spread, and if so, how far has it spread?
  • What is the stage of my cancer?
  • What is my prognosis or expected outcome?
  • What treatments do you recommend?
  • Why do you recommend those treatments?
  • What are those treatment side effects?
  • Will I need surgery? If so, what surgery do you recommend and why?
  • Im interested in participating in clinical trials. Are you able to help me find one?
  • Do you know if there are any local support groups?

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Triple negative breast cancer is one of the more challenging breast cancers to treat. You might be discouraged by what you have read about triple negative breast cancer. But there are a number of very effective treatments for triple negative breast cancer, including immunotherapy, chemotherapy, surgery and radiation. And every day researchers learn more about this rare cancer. Their knowledge is your power. If youre concerned you arent getting the straight story about your cancer, ask your healthcare provider to walk you through your diagnosis and treatment options.


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