Breast cancer is a complex disease that’s different for every woman. Staging is a way for doctors to describe the disease.
Some experts consider stage 0 the earliest stage of breast cancer. Others think of it as a sort of precancer stage.
In this stage, the cancer either hasn't spread beyond the breast or has spread in a very small amount to a lymph node.
In stage II, the cancer is still contained within the breast and in some cases in nearby lymph nodes.
In stage III, the cancer has spread beyond the breast and into nearby lymph nodes.
With stage IV, the breast cancer has spread to other parts of your body, affecting the bones, brain, lungs, or liver.
Researchers are always on the hunt for new and better ways to diagnose and treat breast cancer.
Radiation therapy uses high levels of radiation to kill cancer cells or keep them from growing, dividing, or spreading.
Proton therapy is used to treat cancers near delicate or critical body areas when radiation can affect those areas.
Chemotherapy for breast cancer uses medicine to kill cancer cells.
Alkylating agents were among the first anti-cancer drugs and are the most commonly used.
Taxanes are a type of chemotherapy and have been a cornerstone of breast cancer therapy for 40 years.
Whether to get chemotherapy is a decision that you'll make together with your doctor.
Selective estrogen receptor modulators and selective estrogen receptor downregulators are therapies for breast cancer.
Tamoxifen is a medication that blocks the female hormone estrogen in the body.
Tamoxifen has been loosely associated with weight gain. Studies have tracked side effects of the drug for years.
Targeted therapy, or biologic therapy, uses the body's immune system or hormonal system to fight breast cancer cells.
About 80% of breast cancers are estrogen-receptor-positive, or ER+ breast cancer, the most common breast cancer subtype.
Anthracyclines are anti-tumor antibiotics that work on the DNA inside cancer cells.
When you have HER2-negative advanced breast cancer, treatment usually focuses on managing the disease, not curing it.
When you have a mutation in one or both of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, your body can't repair DNA as well as usual.
With HER2-negative breast cancer, your doctor will recommend treatments that will likely cause different side effects.
The goal of breast cancer surgery is to remove the tumor and a portion of surrounding tissue while conserving the breast.
A mastectomy is a way to treat breast cancer by surgically removing a breast and sometimes nearby tissues.
A lumpectomy is a type of surgery for breast cancer to remove cancer or other abnormal tissue from your breast.
A skin-sparing mastectomy is a newer technique that tries to preserve as much of the skin as possible.
If you’ve had a mastectomy because of breast cancer, you may choose to have reconstructive plastic surgery.
For DIEP flap surgery, doctors take tissues from your belly to make a breast.
Nipple and areola reconstruction after breast reconstruction can boost your body image and help you adjust psychologically.
These are general guidelines for recovering from breast cancer surgery. Always follow your doctor's instructions.
It’s common for women to get this condition after their breast cancer treatment.
After you get a breast cancer operation, good nutrition and exercise can help you regain your health.
Breast cancer treatments can affect healthy cells and can change how you feel. This could cause a number of side effects.
In most cases, the biggest life-changing effects of breast cancer come from the treatment, not from the disease.
If you’ve had taxane-based chemotherapy or other treatments, you may form a condition called peripheral neuropathy.
Complementary and alternative treatments help some women lessen the side effects of radiation and chemotherapy.
Cancer medicines are strong. Although their side effects can be intense, you've got ways to ease them.
You're likely to have some fatigue while you're being treated for breast cancer or any other kind of cancer.
Your weight might change when you get treated for breast cancer. Most women gain pounds, but others lose some.
When you have breast cancer, exercise may be the last thing on your mind.
While undergoing breast cancer treatment, it's important to eat right, get enough rest, and, if possible, exercise.
Healthy juices on their own don’t make up for meals. But they’re an easy way to work fruits and vegetables into your day.