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Breast Cancer Care Questions

Breast cancer care is basically the treatment plan in which one follows when diagnosed with breast cancer. Every patient is different making a breast cancer care plan unique to that individuals needs. While there are standard breast cancer care plans, many times there are different levels or stages of cancer that may require alterations. To learn more about breast cancer care, take a look at the questions below that have been answered by Experts.

Does a 2nd diagnosis of breast cancer mean someone will have to have a double mastectomy?

Generally when a woman has breast cancer, there may be a chance of the cancer returning. However this is usually dependent upon how advanced the first round of cancer was. Usually the chance of breast cancer recurring depends on how far the cancer had spread to surrounding tissues. The more the cancer spreads means the higher chance of a recurrence. Furthermore, a new cancer may appear that may not be associated with the past cancer that had been treated. However more times than not a cancer may be a recurrence from the prior cancer.

Not all cases or recurring cancer result in a double mastectomy. The risk usually depends on how advanced the cancer is when detected. The patient's doctor will usually order a biopsy to determine if the cancer is a result of prior cancer or a new developing cancer. During the testing, the doctor will determine the stage in which the cancer has advanced. Once the biopsy has been read and the cancer has been staged (the advancement of the cancer) the doctor will then discuss treatment options with the patient. Generally the breast cancer care plan may be based off of prior treatment plans.

Due to the difficulty in studying recurring breast cancer, there may be more information pertaining to primary (first) breast cancer. As of yet there isn't an affirmative course of therapy. This means that dependent upon the patient's history with cancer generally specifies the further treatments. Many times a patient may receive the same treatment as before. However there may be a different treatment plan made if the cancer is more aggressive.

What is the standard care for cancer screening in a woman with dense breast?

Breast cancer care plans may vary from area to area. So depending upon where the woman lives will greatly impact the type of care she may receive.

In most cases a dense breast may make it difficult to clearly view the details on a mammogram. If there are signs of a mass, an ultrasound of the breast may be required. When studying dense breasts, there have been some impressive results when using digital screening. However, digital screening isn't for all patients therefore not usually considered a standard treatment.

There has been a recent clinical trial involving breast screening that doesn't include breast compression. At this time it is uncertain whether or not penetration of the dense breast may be improved. However there is enough information to show promise as an alternative screening tool for breast cancer care.

Is it possible to treat breast cancer with Cyberknife?

Cyberknife is but one of numerous machines that may be used as a radiation device known as stereotactic radio surgery. The technique of the Cyberknife provides a narrow beam of radiation which may prevent excessive damage to the area surrounding the tumor. With breast cancer, there is always a possibility of a microscopic cancer tissue near the existing tumor which may allow a recurrence of cancer. By treating the entire breast, these tiny cancer tissues may be exposed to the radiation which may be difficult when using the Cyberknife.

There is ongoing research studying the effectiveness of Cyberknife for the treatment of breast cancer. However to date, there isn't solid evidence proving the benefits. Therefore it is difficult to determine if the Cyberknife would be considered effective in removing all of the breast cancer.

If someone has invasive lobular breast cancer do they have to have a mastectomy?

Generally when dealing with invasive lobular breast cancer, the tumor may be surgically removed followed by chemo and/or radiation therapy. Surgical procedures generally depend upon the patient and the tumor's size and advancement. The typical surgical procedure may be a lumpectomy (removal of the tumor) or a mastectomy (removal of the breast).

Breast cancer affects thousands of women's lives every year. While some breast cancer is very treatable, other forms of breast cancer may be very difficult to treat. Many personal and medical questions arise when dealing with a cancer diagnosis. If a person has questions or concerns regarding breast cancer care the person should ask an Expert for medical insight.
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