Advanced breast cancer

MRI scan Blood Tests see description below Blood tests also called tumor marker tests measure non-specific markers found in the blood that can be followed over time.

Advanced breast cancer

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The stage of the cancer helps you and your doctor: Your doctor will begin to determine this during surgery to remove the cancer and look at one or more of the underarm lymph nodes, which is where breast cancer tends to travel first.

He or she also may order additional blood tests or imaging tests if there is reason to believe the cancer might have spread beyond the breast.

Advanced breast cancer

The AJCC is a group of cancer experts who oversee how cancer is classified and communicated. This is to ensure that all doctors and treatment facilities are describing cancer in a uniform way so that the treatment results of all people can be compared and understood.

In the past, stage number was calculated based on just three clinical characteristics, T, N, and M: Higher numbers mean the cancer is more advanced.

What is Advanced, Metastatic and Stage 3 & 4 Breast Cancer?

Jump to more detailed information about the TNM system. Oncotype DX scoreif the cancer is estrogen-receptor-positive, HER2-negative, and there is no cancer in the lymph nodes Adding information about tumor grade, hormone-receptor status, HER2 status, and possibly Oncotype DX test results has made determining the stage of a breast cancer more complex, but also more accurate.

So, a woman diagnosed with stage II disease that is triple-negative [estrogen-receptor-negative, progesterone-receptor-negative, and HER2-negative] will have a very different treatment plan than a woman diagnosed with stage II disease that is estrogen-receptor-positive.

The staging guidelines now take into account what doctors have been doing all along.

What is Advanced, Metastatic and Stage 3 & 4 Breast Cancer?

You also may see or hear certain words used to describe the stage of the breast cancer: The cancer is confined within the breast. The lymph nodes, primarily those in the armpit, are involved. The cancer is found in other parts of the body as well.

Jump to a specific breast cancer stage to learn more:Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is a rare but aggressive type of locally advanced breast cancer.

Advanced breast cancer

It’s called inflammatory breast cancer because its main symptoms are swelling and redness of the breast (the breast looks inflamed). Advanced Breast Cancer Advanced breast cancer support group and discussion community Inspire has 1,, Members, 29, of whom are part of this community.


Relieving symptoms of advanced breast cancer Treatment to relieve symptoms depends on where the cancer has spread. For example, pain from bone metastases may be treated with radiation therapy, drugs called bisphosphonates such as pamidronate (Aredia) or zoledronic acid (Zometa), or the drug denosumab (Xgeva).

Metastatic breast cancer is the most advanced stage (stage IV) of breast cancer. Cancer cells have spread past the breast and axillary (underarm) lymph nodes to other areas of the body where they continue to grow and multiply. Welcome to the Advanced Breast Cancer Community for patients and caregivers The information and tools you’ll find here are unique to advanced stages of breast cancer, including metastatic breast cancer, to help you and your loved ones learn more about your disease.

Find information about advanced, metastatic and stage 3 & 4 breast cancer, possible treatment options, and how to talk to your doctor.

Advanced cancer. Advanced breast cancer means that a cancer that began in you breast has spread to another part of the body. The treatment you need depends on a number of factors including where it is in your body. Find out more about what it is, symptoms, possible treatments and get tips on how to cope. When you find out you have advanced breast cancer, called metastatic or stage IV cancer, you probably have a lot of questions. That's understandable. What is advanced or metastatic breast cancer? Breast cancer begins when abnormal cancerous cells in the breast grow and multiply without stopping, creating a tumor. It usually starts in the ducts or lobules of the breast. Advanced breast cancer includes the most serious of the five possible stages, Stages 3 and 4.
Breast Cancer Treatment (PDQ®)—Patient Version - National Cancer Institute