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Treatment

 
Treatment

Chapter: 6 - Treatment

Subchapter: 1 - Introduction

Treatment Introduction
In recent years, due to earlier detection and more effective treatments, many women diagnosed with breast cancer overcome the disease and go on to live healthy lives.

Treatment Options Recommended By Your Health Care Provider
It’s important to understand the different types of treatment options available to you, because you are an integral part of your decision-making team. Your medical team will advocate certain treatments, but they will also seek your input.

They will recommend a plan based on:
- Stage of cancer and whether or not it has spread
- Type of cancer, and status of the estrogen, progesterone, or HER2/neu receptors found in the cancer cells
- Your age, health, and menstrual/menopausal stage
- And whether or not this is your first cancer treatment

In general, there are five treatment options, and most treatment plans include a combination of the following:
1) Surgery
2) Radiation
3) Hormone Therapy
4) Chemotherapy
5) Targeted Therapies

Some are local, targeting just the area around the tumor with surgery or radiation. Others are systemic, targeting your whole body with cancer-fighting agents such as chemotherapy.

Most women receive a combination of treatments, but each case is unique, and your medical team will work to find the most effective treatment for you.

Getting A Second Opinion
Even so, you may find yourself second-guessing their recommendations or suggested treatment plan. If you’re hesitant for any reason, you should get the opinion of another doctor before beginning treatment. Your doctor will not mind if you want a second opinion; some insurance plans even require it.

Again, don’t hesitate to ask your medical team questions. When it comes to getting a second opinion, you are your own best advocate.

Related Questions

  • Nikol Vega Profile

    How do you tell your doctor you're getting a second opinion without hurting their feelings?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 8 years 2 answers
    • Betsy Chapin Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2010

      Don't hesitate getting a second opinion. Doctors expect patients to seek a second opinion. Some doctors will offer to set up your second opinion for you. I just got done with treatment and sought a second opinion but ended up going back to my oncologist. Do not worry about hurting the doctor,...

      more

      Don't hesitate getting a second opinion. Doctors expect patients to seek a second opinion. Some doctors will offer to set up your second opinion for you. I just got done with treatment and sought a second opinion but ended up going back to my oncologist. Do not worry about hurting the doctor, they understand. You will have total peace of mind when you have sought out all possibilities for treatment.

      Comment
    • Tiffani Warila Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Don't worry about hurting your doctors feelings. My surgeon suggested I go get a second opinion at a bigger hospital and helped me set up the appointment. For me, the second opinion gave me peace of mind that I was doing the right course of treatment. They said exactly the same thing and...

      more

      Don't worry about hurting your doctors feelings. My surgeon suggested I go get a second opinion at a bigger hospital and helped me set up the appointment. For me, the second opinion gave me peace of mind that I was doing the right course of treatment. They said exactly the same thing and reassured me that although they would love to have me with them, the hospital closer to home was a great choice as well. It's never a bad idea to get a second opinion!

      Comment
  • Mary Chase Profile

    I had my first chemo treatment and landed in the hospital due to a very severe reaction. As a result I will not receive more chemo. But how long does it take for the metallic taste to go away? I can barely tolerate any food or liquids!

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 7 years 3 answers
    • Isabel Souchet Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2010

      Me too that metallic taste was awful. Remember the old lemon head candies, they helped me a lot

      Comment
    • Verena Munday Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I have had the metallic taste, every time.....The lemon dros really helped...I could drink buttermilk but every thing else was rough....if I brushed my teeth with baking soda it seemed to help.

      Comment
  • Pam Boysen Profile

    Hi everyone. I am 6 months past chemo and 3 months past radiation, on Femara for 5 years. I am having lots of bone pain and hot flashes. Is this a side effect of the Femara?

    Asked by anonymous

    Survivor since 2011
    over 7 years 2 answers
    • Cathy Wadkins Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Yes chemo, femara, all these things works against your body. Just endure what ever

      Comment
    • Sue Rice Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      Yes, that is the main side effects of Femara you can get treatment to help ease the flushes, talk to your gp or oncologist they will help. I am on femara as well and the hot flushes were unbearable I used to take Effexor which helped ease heaps but gave me headaches so now take Clonodine. Good luck

      Comment
  • Rita Siomos Profile

    Has anyone has any side affects with the steroids ?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 7 years 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      This is my only horrendous story about all of my treatment. After only one dose, given in with my chemo treatment I received Dexamethasone... or something like that spelling. I became horribly depressed. I was then "accidently" give a second dose and became suicidal. I was very afraid if my...

      more

      This is my only horrendous story about all of my treatment. After only one dose, given in with my chemo treatment I received Dexamethasone... or something like that spelling. I became horribly depressed. I was then "accidently" give a second dose and became suicidal. I was very afraid if my husband even left the room. There is nothing to counteract it and it took about a month for me to return to me. I had to be very pro-active and question what was in my infusion from then on. I would have been given a third dose (!!!!) if I hadn't questioned the nurse. The order had never been changed in my their computerized system. That was my story with steroids. This is a rare side effect but it was terrifying and I was, in no way able to "will" myself to feel better. Sharon

      1 comment
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      This is my only horrendous story about all of my treatment. After only one dose, given in with my chemo treatment I received Dexamethasone... or something like that spelling. I became horribly depressed. I was then "accidently" give a second dose and became suicidal. I was very afraid if my...

      more

      This is my only horrendous story about all of my treatment. After only one dose, given in with my chemo treatment I received Dexamethasone... or something like that spelling. I became horribly depressed. I was then "accidently" give a second dose and became suicidal. I was very afraid if my husband even left the room. There is nothing to counteract it and it took about a month for me to return to me. I had to be very pro-active and question what was in my infusion from then on. I would have been given a third dose (!!!!) if I hadn't questioned the nurse. The order had never been changed in my their computerized system. That was my story with steroids. This is a rare side effect but it was terrifying and I was, in no way able to "will" myself to feel better. Sharon

      1 comment

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