If you or a loved one has breast cancer, staying informed and knowledgeable will only make it easier for both of you. There are a number of different treatment options to be aware of, but the most important thing is to stay positive. Pink Ribbons Mastectomy and Lymphedema Boutique offer support to breast cancer patients when it comes to getting new bras, new clothes, and accessories to fight it together.
Stages of Breast Cancer
To determine the current stage of breast cancer, the doctors need to get a few measurements and tests done. Each stage varies depending on the size and the number (if any) of hormone receptors. The doctors can then make a prognosis and determine if any clinical trials will be necessary. Breast cancer is measured in stages 0 – 4:
Stage 0: There are no signs of cancer cells or non-cancerous abnormal cells. This is a noninvasive cancer, meaning it hasn’t spreaded out of the breast where it started or anywhere on the body.
Stage 1: There are is little visible signs of cancer, either spreading to the first closest lymph node or has not spread at all. There are two types of Stage 1 cancer: Stage 1A means that the patient will have a tumor up to 2 centimeters, but it has yet to spread. Stage 1B means there is no tumor, but a small group of cancer cells in the lymph nodes have been detected.
Stage 2: Like stage 1, there are also 2 different types of stage 2. In general, stage 2 means that the cancer is visible and larger than stage 1, but cancer has yet to spread to nearby lymph nodes.
Stage 3: The tumors have grown and spread to the nearby tissue and/or lymph nodes, but has yet to spread to any distant organs. (Also known as Metastasis.)
Stage 4: cancer has spread outside of the breast and nearby lymph nodes. Systemic Therapy will be necessary.
Inflammatory: This stage can only occur in stage 3 or 4, meaning the measurements of how far cancer has spread will determine the stage. Chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery are the treatment options that should be carefully considered with your doctor.
Recurrent Breast Cancer: Though not technically a stage, this occurs when the patient undergoes surgery for cancer and then it comes back. Treatment will most likely remain the same, though a doctor may consider an alternative approach.
Triple-Negative Breast Cancer: This is a type of cancer cell that doesn’t have estrogen, progesterone receptors, and not enough protein, HER2. These cells tend to spread quickly and faster than other cancers types. Chemotherapy is the main treatment because the cancer cells don’t have hormone receptors.
Pink Ribbons Mastectomy and Lymphedema Boutique will strive to assist each woman who comes through our doors regain or maintain her self-esteem and good body image that was altered by her breast cancer treatment. For more information visit our website at www.pinkribbonsmemphis.com.