Will I Die Of Breast Cancer
This is a difficult question to answer early in your cancer care but it is still worth asking. Many people just diagnosed with cancer have no idea how much of a risk to their life their unique situation poses. Most breast cancers carry a low risk of recurrence, especially early-stage cancers. The answer is usually reassuring.
Should I Have Scans Or Blood Tests To Check For Breast Cancer
After a diagnosis of early stage breast cancer, any remaining breast tissue should be evaluated with scans regularly. The frequency is often annually but is best discussed with your specialist.
Current guidelines and evidence recommend against routine CT or bone scans, or blood tests, to look for recurrence of cancer in patients who do not have any symptoms or other concerns that need to be followed up on. These tests have not been shown to improve outcomes and cause unnecessary scanxiety. If you do have concerning symptoms , then you should bring them to the attention of your healthcare team to be checked out.
How Is Tnbc Diagnosed
Imaging tests are usually the first tests done:
- Mammography, the most common screening tool for breast cancer, uses X-rays to take images of the breast and can uncover tumors that may be too small to feel.
- MRI uses a magnet, radio waves and a computer to make detailed images of the breast with a much greater resolution than a mammogram offers.
The next step is a biopsy to remove a sample of suspicious cells from the breast to analyze them. Techniques include:
The appropriate type of biopsy for you depends on factors such as the size and location of the tumor. You may also have a biopsy of your underarm lymph nodes at the same time to see if any cancer is there.
Breast cancer treatment: The care you need is one call away
Your multidisciplinary team will work with you to develop a personalized plan to treat your breast cancer in a way that fits your individual needs and goals.
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Screening For Breast Cancer
Women aged between 50 and 74 are invited to access free screening mammograms every two years via the BreastScreen Australia Program.
Women aged 40-49 and 75 and over are also eligible to receive free mammograms, however they do not receive an invitation to attend.
It is recommended that women with a strong family history of breast or ovarian cancer, aged between 40 and 49 or over 75 discuss options with their GP, or contact BreastScreen Australia on 13 20 50.
Lumpectomy Versus Mastectomy: Prognosis For Dcis
The survival rate following mastectomy for DCIS is reported to be 98% to 99%. That represents a 1% to 2% rate of local recurrence.
Medical studies of excision of DCIS reported a 20% to 44% local recurrence rate over a 10 year period.
For women who underwent breast conserving therapy and radiation there was a 10% to 15% rate of local recurrence.
However, the increased local recurrence risk following breast conservation surgery did NOT affect breast cancer-specific survival when compared with patients who underwent mastectomy for DCIS.
Both groups of patients had a 99% long term breast cancer specific survival.
The gold standard of treatment for DCIS at the moment is wide local excision with radiotherapy. According to one 2012 medical study, surgery and radiation therapy is superior to just surgery regarding recurrence rates. However, neither of these approaches affect overall survival rates.
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Minimize The Risk Of Second Cancers
Keep Track of Your Health Care
- Keep a health journal.
- Write down everything you want to ask your health care team. Take notes and keep track of questions between visits.
- Make a list of your medications. Bring this information to the visit along with all of your medication bottles. This will help the health care team keep track of all the medications you are taking, including vitamins and over-the-counter medications.
- Take notes during health care appointments.
- Keep all of your health records together and bring this information with you to health care appointments.
- Bring extra copies of important documents to give to appropriate health care team members. You can also fax or mail these before your appointment. Having the health care team read your documents may be an easier way for you to communicate.
- Store pamphlets, information about medication side effects and important phone numbers in your notebook so that everything is in one place.
One of the most important things you can do is to follow-up with a health care team that is well-informed about survivorship care. Good medical care and screening can help detect second cancers early.
- Try to find balance with a healthy lifestyle.
- Know if your family has a history of cancer.
- Use a health journal to prepare for your next visit with a member of your health care team.
Type Of Breast Cancer
The type of breast cancer can affect the recurrence rate.
According to Susan G. Komen, factors that influence recurrence can include:
- biology of the tumor
- treatment of the original tumor
- stage of the cancer at diagnosis
, treatment for recurrent local breast cancer depends on what treatment the person originally had.
If a person originally had a lumpectomy, a doctor may recommend a mastectomy.
If a person originally had a mastectomy, a doctor may try to remove the tumor and recommend radiation.
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What Is Ductal Carcinoma In
For an in-depth look at Ductal Carcinoma visit our latest post.
Basically, ductal carcinoma in-situ is a very early form of breast cancer, whereby cancer cells, of various grades, are present in the milk ducts of the breasts.
The reason ductal cancer is named in-situ at this early phase, is that the abnormal cells have not yet spread outside of the milk ducts. This explains the reason for the very good prognosis for this type of breast cancer.
Expert Review And References
- American Cancer Society. Breast Cancer. 2015: .
- de Boer M, van Dijck JA, Bult P, Borm GF, Tjan-Heijnen VC. Breast cancer prognosis and occult lymph node metastases, isolated tumor cells, and micrometastases. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Oxford University Press 2010.
- Lonning PE. Breast cancer prognostication and prediction: are we making progress?. Annals of Oncology. Oxford: Oxford University Press 2007.
- Morrow M, Burstein HJ, and Harris JR. Malignant tumors of the breast. DeVita VT Jr, Lawrence TS, & Rosenberg SA. Cancer: Principles and Practice of Oncology. 10th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 2015: 79: 1117-1156.
- Tripathy D, Eskenazi LB, Goodson, WH, et al. Breast. Ko, A. H., Dollinger, M., & Rosenbaum, E. Everyone’s Guide to Cancer Therapy: How Cancer is Diagnosed, Treated and Managed Day to Day. 5th ed. Kansas City: Andrews McMeel Publishing 2008: pp. 473-514.
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When Is Radiation Usually Used To Treat Stage 2 Breast Cancer
According to the American Cancer Society, radiation therapy may be used after lumpectomy to mitigate the risk of cancer cells recurring in the same breast or nearby lymph nodes. After a mastectomy, an oncologist may determine that radiation is necessary if the tumor was larger than 5 cm, if there was lymph node involvement, or if cancer was found outside of surgical margins.
Discussion On The Figures And Bar Graphs
As we can see outlook for breast cancer according to stage has improved immensely since these statistics first started appearing on the internet.
The estimated 5 year survival rates from Dr. Halls early data for Stage I was only 85%. By 2002 this figure has risen to 88% and for 2012 almost a 100% survival rate.
For Stage II the outlook is also much improved. From the 2002 data the survival rate was between 74% and 81%. Again by the latest data the relative percentage survival rate is 93%.
Furthermore Stage III in 2002 had a percentage survival rate of 41% to 49%. However, the 2012 data shows that this percentage has risen to 72%
Sadly, the survival percentage for stage IV breast cancer remains fairly low. 15% 5-year survival rate in 2002 to 22% 5-year relative survival rate in 2012.
NOTE: Just a word of caution on statistics. The first two graphs are percentage survival rates. So, if the figure is, for example, 93% for Stage II breast cancer, this means that 93 out of 100 patients with a Stage II diagnosis will be alive 5 years later.
On the other hand, relative survival rates in the lower table, compares breast cancer sufferers with the general population. So, if the relative survival rate for Stage II breast cancer is 93% this means that people with that diagnosis are 93% as likely to be alive 5 years later as the general population with similar life factors.
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Is Stage 4 Breast Cancer Curable
Theres currently no cure for stage 4 breast cancer, but with treatments it can be kept under control, often for years at a time.
People with metastatic breast cancer need to receive treatments for the rest of their lives. If a certain treatment stops being effective, another treatment regimen may be tried.
What Are The Chances Of Breast Cancer Recurrence After Treatment For Stage 2 Breast Cancer
In women who have breast-conserving treatment, the chance of recurrence is about 3%-15% in 10 years, depending on tumor characteristics and margins. Distant recurrence in those who had mastectomy is most influenced by axillary lymph node involvement. When axillary lymph nodes are not cancerous, the recurrence rate is 6% in 5 years. When axillary lymph nodes are cancerous, the recurrence rate is 23% in 5 years with mastectomy but no radiation.
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The Use Of Triple Therapy Does It Have A Role In Dcis
It has been suggested, in the past, that triple therapy for DCIS reduces the risk of local recurrence of invasive breast cancer by 8% to 9%..
Despite some medical studies suggesting that there is a role for anti-hormonal therapy for DCIS a recent 2016 medical review questions this opinion.
Tjalma, from the above study, suggests that treatment with an anti-hormonal therapy, such as Tamoxifen or Anastrozole, for women with DCIS increased morbidity but did not reduce mortality.
A 2014 review of the use of Tamoxifen, as opposed to no additional treatment in DCIS patients, showed a reduction in the risk of new DCIS events in the same and opposite breast.
There was also a signigicant reduction in breast cancers in the opposite breast. However, there was no significant reduction in invasive breast cancers in the affected breast after Tamoxifen use.
Tjalma argues that the decision to give hormone therapy is questionable because it has no effect on mortality and does have significant side effects that can affect the quality of life.
Using Your Family History
You should certainly share your family history with your medical team. Your doctors might advise genetic counseling or genetic testing if your family history suggests that you could be carrying a breast cancer gene.
Some red flags include:
- Cancer of any kind before the age of 50
- More than one relative with the same type of cancer
- One family member who has more than one type of cancer
- A family member who has cancer not typical for that gender, such as breast cancer in a male
- Certain combinations of cancer, such as the combination of breast cancer with ovarian cancer, uterine cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer, or melanoma
- Cancer in both of one organ, for example, bilateral breast or ovarian cancer
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Survival Statistics For Breast Cancer
Survival statistics for breast cancer are very general estimates and must be interpreted very carefully. Because these statistics are based on the experience of groups of people, they cannot be used to predict a particular persons chances of survival.
There are many different ways to measure and report cancer survival statistics. Your doctor can explain the statistics for breast cancer and what they mean to you.
Symptoms Of Salivary Gland
No problem asking any questions it helps- Well about 2 years ago a lymoh node under my chin seemed to pop in and out but it seemed to be everytime I had a sinus infection so ignored it and chalked it up to sinsus issues
then last October it stayed out and seemed a little larger so while at the dentist he said due to my background and prior radiation I should see a oral surgeon in his office ..who sent me to his ENT
so no real symptoms except for the enlarged lymph node guess for us enlarged lymph nodes are not good mist of the time
Take care Cathy
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How Quickly Do Breast Cancer Tumors Grow From Stage To Stage
Cancer cells divide and multiply quickly in such a way that as a tumor gets bigger, it divides and grows even faster. The average doubling time for breast cancer tumors is between 50 and 200 days. Breast cancer tumor growth rate is impacted by hormonal factors, such as hormone receptor status and HER2 status.
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What Are The Chances Of Dcis Recurrence
DCIS is non-invasive so women do not die of it. Their real concern arises if they develop invasive cancer and the cancer spreads. According to the study, the group of patients with the lowest risk has only a 2 percent chance of developing invasive cancer at 5 years and a 4 percent chance at 8 years.
One may also ask, can you get DCIS twice? DCIS is NOT invasive cancer. DCIS stays inside the breast milk duct. DCIS can be large or small, but it does NOT spread outside the milk duct into the surrounding normal breast tissue or into the lymph nodes or other organs. Yes, it does make it very unlikely that any type of breast cancer will be diagnosed again.
Likewise, people ask, what are the chances of DCIS recurrence after mastectomy?
The rate of locoregional recurrence was 4.2% in women younger than age 40 vs just 0.2% in women at least 50 years old, the study authors reported. The overall risk of having a locoregional recurrence after mastectomy for DCIS is very low, but it is higher in younger women.
Why does DCIS recur?
The researchers found 26 factors that could be linked to invasive breast cancer recurrence after DCIS. Positive margins: If the DCIS has positive margins, it means that some cancer cells were left behind at the cancer site and could eventually lead to a recurrence. Being premenopausal: Premenopausal women are younger.
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Other Factors That May Affect Survival Rates For Ductal Carcinoma In Situ
Hormone Replacement Therapy and Age of Menarche
There has been extensive research in the past regarding the connection between women taking hormone replacement therapy after menopause and invasive breast cancer.
However, there are very few studies that have examined the risk of HRT associated with Ductal Carcinoma In-Situ. A 2012 study examined 1,179 post-menopausal women with Carcinoma-In-Situ.
The study found no association between DCIS and use of Hormone Replacement Therapy . Furthermore, there was no association with current use of HRT or the duration of use of these hormones.
However, the study concludes that larger clinical trials are needed to truly assess if there are any associations between HRT and DCIS.
In addition, the age of menarche has not been shown, so far, to be associated with DCIS incidence. Indeed, it is more likely for women over 60 to develop DCIS.
More Than One Primary Cancer
Several members of my family have had two different primary cancers my sister has had three primaries, all early stage and treated only with surgery (renal cell carcinoma dx 1995, papillary thyroid cancer, dx 2004 and non-small cell lung cancer, dx 2004. She is now cancer free and has never had a relapse of any of her cancers. However, this year, when her doctor scheduled annual follow-up CT scans, her insurance company refused to pay for them. We have genetic cancers in our family, and are in the process of appealing.
I have read that 10% of cancer survivors have a second primary, and 0.01% of allsurvivors have three primaries.
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A Clinical Trial Could Offer Innovative Treatment Options Not Yet Widely Available
A clinical trial is a research study that uses either treatments not yet available to the general public or available treatments used in new ways or new combinations. Clinical trials are safe and effective options that can improve how breast cancer is treated. At MedStar Health, we run nearly 25 breast cancer trials at any given time to give our patientsaccess to groundbreaking cancer treatments. Currently, we’re participating in a nationwide trial to see if certain DCIS cases can be treated with an anti-hormone pill instead of using surgery as the first line of defense.
What Is The Life Expectancy For Breast Cancer
Life expectancy for breast cancer is often expressed in 5-year survival rates, that is, how many people will be alive 5 years after diagnosis.
Breast cancer 5-year survival rates:
- Localized : 99%
- Stage IA, some IIA, and some IIB
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