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Breast Cancer

 
Breast Cancer

Chapter: 3 - Breast Cancer

Subchapter: 1 - What is Cancer?

What is Cancer?
Healthy cells are the basic building blocks of all tissue and organs in the body. But when cell DNA (the cell’s wiring) is damaged, mutated cells begin to rapidly reproduce without following the pre-wired plan.

Aggressive cell growth can form a tumor (or mass of tissue) that, like each individual cell, does not function as originally intended. These abnormal cells or groups of cells can progress into the disease known as cancer.

Cancer Origins
Breast cancer usually begins either where the milk is being produced, the lobules, or in the milk ducts.

Lobules
Lobular Carcinoma in Situ (LCIS) is a pre-cancerous condition that forms and is contained in the lobules. Invasive lobular carcinoma is a type of cancer that develops and breaks through the lobules, with the potential to spread to other areas of the body.

Milk Ducts
Ductal Carcinoma in Situ (DCIS) is a type of cancer that forms in the milk ducts and is considered non–invasive because it has not spread to any surrounding tissue. Once the cancer has spread beyond the milk ducts, it is known as ductal carcinoma.

Less frequently, breast cancer can originate in the stromal tissue– the fatty and fibrous connective tissue of the breast.

Prognosis
Treating breast cancer as soon as it’s discovered is very important. If left untreated, the cancer cells may invade healthy breast tissue or lymph nodes. Once in the lymph system, cancer can spread more easily to other parts of the body.

Related Questions

  • mary wightman Profile

    my mammo was abnormal i have to go for another mammo and ulyrs sound does mean I have breat cancer I am just so ill smpked and drank aged 65

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 6 years 3 answers
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      HECK NO! I don't know how many times I have had to have another mammogram and ultrasound. There is just something that has either changed or they screwed up your mammogram and need another one. Try not to get too excited yet. At your ultrasound appointment, they will explain what they are...

      more

      HECK NO! I don't know how many times I have had to have another mammogram and ultrasound. There is just something that has either changed or they screwed up your mammogram and need another one. Try not to get too excited yet. At your ultrasound appointment, they will explain what they are looking at. Hang in there. I had breast cancer when I was 59 but I found it. This was 7 months after I had a mammogram and ultrasound. As for guilt tripping yourself because of bad habits.... I NEVER smoked or drank, no family history, led a squeaky-clean life and STILL got breast cancer. GUILT, is a wasted emotion.... hang in there and keep us posted. Take care, Sharon

      Comment
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Guilt can start a change whether you are diagnosed or not. Choose wisely for yourself. No reason not too but the talk in your head Hope it is clear.

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    Does Taxol work for HER2 negative, ER positive cancer?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 6 years 5 answers
    • View all 5 answers
    • julie s Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 2A Patient

      I did TAC and had a complete response! (Tumor entirely gone- NED- no evidence if disease!) Keep a positive attitude and stay optimistic...I'm convinced this played a big part in my results!

      Comment
    • Karen G Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 2A Patient

      Yes I was told it does. I am on the AC portion of the AC-T and I am Er HER2 -.

      Comment
  • Kay Roberts Profile

    Im 46 dx breast cancer HER2. Therapy starts this week. Im so nervous Worried about side effects. Do you remember your very FIRST treatment, What should I expect??? Has anyone found a solution to nausea???

    Asked by anonymous

    Stage 3A Patient
    almost 7 years 7 answers
    • View all 7 answers
    • Jennifer Jones Profile
      anonymous
      Patient

      If you get a bad headache taking Zofran let your Dr. Know. I was allergic to it and had to go on another nausea medicine. Good luck!

      Comment
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I finished 6 treatments of tc a week ago. I was given zofran before each treatment was started, then I took one zofran that night and then 3 x a day for the next three days. Fortunately, I never had nausea. I was told if the zofran did not work I could take compazine. I was really worried about...

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      I finished 6 treatments of tc a week ago. I was given zofran before each treatment was started, then I took one zofran that night and then 3 x a day for the next three days. Fortunately, I never had nausea. I was told if the zofran did not work I could take compazine. I was really worried about side effects but just took and am taking one day (or hour) at a time. I wish you the best.

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    I will have a lumpectomy and maybe removal of the lymph nodes next week... I am very afraid of this all... what should I do?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 8 years 3 answers
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Ask your doc lots if questions, depend on your friends and family for love and support, and access your local breast cancer survivorship center. Know that many women have dealt with this and survived. Know that you too can survive this!!!

      Comment
    • JANICE REMUS Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I will have my surgery one week after you. So fear, anxiety, I believe is a normal reaction.
      I am just concentrating on living one hour to one hour or one day at a time. I am also a Christian so I pray and turn this over to God. This actually helps me and I don't know how else to handle it....

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      I will have my surgery one week after you. So fear, anxiety, I believe is a normal reaction.
      I am just concentrating on living one hour to one hour or one day at a time. I am also a Christian so I pray and turn this over to God. This actually helps me and I don't know how else to handle it.

      I hour of anxiety will not add one moment of life but one moment of Trust in Jesus will add 1 hour of peace to yours, Trust him and let your Faith grow to days of fulfillment and peace in your life. We all need a way to deal with this - I am just sharing - this is mine

      Comment

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Breast cancer affects one out of every eight women in their lifetime.

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