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Types & Stages

 
Types & Stages

Chapter: 5 - Types & Stages

Subchapter: 5 - Stage 4

Stage 4 is the most advanced stage of breast cancer, because it has spread to other organs of the body; most often the bones, lungs, liver, or brain. This is known as “metastatic cancer”.

If you have been diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer, the strenuous cycles of treatment can be exhausting. You will need to make careful decisions and plans regarding your condition, but there is no reason to give up on life and relationships. Many women with Stage 4 cancer discover strength of character and qualities of resilience they never knew they had before.

Remember to rely on your supportive group of family and friends. With their care and support, as well as your personal motivation, you will be able invest wholeheartedly in the options at hand, making the most of life for you and your loved ones.

Related Questions

  • Thumb avatar default

    Is there a spot in your site for mothers who lost her daughter to breast cancer?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 9 years 2 answers
    • Catherine Nodurft Profile
      anonymous
      Family Member or Loved One

      So sorry about your daughter! I would recommend you visit our online support community at www.MyNBCF.org, it is an amazing support community of breast cancer survivors, friends and family.

      Comment
    • Catherine Nodurft Profile
      anonymous
      Family Member or Loved One

      Also, we have a list of support resources at http://breastcan.cr/fZQzP6.

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    What is the life span of someone with Stage 4?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 9 years 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • Janelle Strunk Profile
      anonymous
      Family Member or Loved One

      It is difficult to tell with any stage of breast cancer. Some women with stage IV breast cancer live many, many years and others lose the fight too soon. The power of prayer and good physicians and treatment can help extend the life span. I do know that most times when cancer is detected...

      more

      It is difficult to tell with any stage of breast cancer. Some women with stage IV breast cancer live many, many years and others lose the fight too soon. The power of prayer and good physicians and treatment can help extend the life span. I do know that most times when cancer is detected early, the survival rate is dramatically increased.

      But I know of women with Stage IV breast cancer that have lived years after a diagnosis. I even read about a woman who had lived 17+ years. So, sorry about the ambiguous answer, but there is no set life span. It varies depending on the type of breast cancer and if/where it has spread.

      It's best to keep hope alive!

      1 comment
    • Lokomaikai Liz-t Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      It really depends on where it has metastasized and the type of breast cancer you have - hormone receptors, etc. I was diagnosed with Stage IV, which had spread to my lungs, liver and bones - six years ago. Maintaining a positive attitude and staying spiritually strong in addition to having a...

      more

      It really depends on where it has metastasized and the type of breast cancer you have - hormone receptors, etc. I was diagnosed with Stage IV, which had spread to my lungs, liver and bones - six years ago. Maintaining a positive attitude and staying spiritually strong in addition to having a great support system and a good oncologist has helped me persevere.

      Comment
  • alison white Profile

    What is the survival rate for stage 4 when it has spread to the bones?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 8 years 1 answer
    • Susan Green Profile
      anonymous
      Patient

      Alison, please go to the CTCA website where you can chat with a professional who deals with all types of cancer care and treatments. They were very helpful to me when I was first diagnosed. I was diagnosed with stage 2a, so can not give you an educated answer, as I believe they can. There are...

      more

      Alison, please go to the CTCA website where you can chat with a professional who deals with all types of cancer care and treatments. They were very helpful to me when I was first diagnosed. I was diagnosed with stage 2a, so can not give you an educated answer, as I believe they can. There are also some really great women on this site who have been through a lot of different cancers and treatments who may also help. Good luck to you! I hope someone can help you!

      Comment
  • Rachael Leslie Profile

    My girlfriend was diagnosed with breast cancer yesterday. The appointment with the surgeon is next week to get specific answers. I want to do anything and everything I can to help her through this. Any advice is very much needed and appreciated!

    Asked by anonymous

    Family Member or Loved One
    about 8 years 5 answers
    • View all 5 answers
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      Rachael,
      How wonderful your dear friend has you standing by her side. She is probably going through the depths of the most terrifying hell right now. I agree with what Anne Marie has said. When I was diagnosed, my friends left me.... which was a horrendous shock. What she will need is your...

      more

      Rachael,
      How wonderful your dear friend has you standing by her side. She is probably going through the depths of the most terrifying hell right now. I agree with what Anne Marie has said. When I was diagnosed, my friends left me.... which was a horrendous shock. What she will need is your support. Go with her to her appointments.... the diagnostic ones will be particularly important. She will need someone to --take notes-- as she will never be able to remember most of what is being said. This is a step by step process. Try to keep her from going to the really dark side. There are a ton of positive stories and outcomes to this lousy diagnosis. We, here, are living proof. Some of the journey's have been very tough but these strong women are here to share their struggles and outcomes. You are a dear friend to want to help her through this battle. Please stay in touch with us, we are here to help you and her along her path. Take care, Sharon

      1 comment
    • Anne Marie jacintho Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      My heart goes out to you and your girlfriend cancer affects not only the patient but the loved ones also. The best thing you can do for your girlfriend is to be at her side offer to go to all her doctor appts with her be her second set of ears ask those questions that she forgot to ask because...

      more

      My heart goes out to you and your girlfriend cancer affects not only the patient but the loved ones also. The best thing you can do for your girlfriend is to be at her side offer to go to all her doctor appts with her be her second set of ears ask those questions that she forgot to ask because when you are with the doctor we patients go blank I don't know how many times I was going to ask this that or the other thing and get into the office and I go blank my husband would just chime in for me Be patient with your girlfriend she will be on a whirlwind of emotions. Hold her tell her it's okay to talk about it all with you let her know your feelings also. My husband and I held each other up luckily one was always stronger then the other on those bad days. I have a link on my profile to my story of my personal experience with breast cancer in 2003. I take you from the initial diagnosis the biopsy surgery and recovery with a reflection a year later. Even though my type of breast cancer or choice of treatment may be different I hope by sharing my experience it will help other women and there family. http://home.roadrunner.com/~amj/

      Comment

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