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Breast Cancer Treatments

Understanding Breast Cancer Treatments - What You Need to Know


Treatments for breast cancer are the general name for surgical procedures for people who have this disease.

Understanding what breast cancer is as important as determining the treatments. Briefly, it is a disease that occurs when the cells in the person's breast proliferate uncontrollably and form a mass called tumor. Patients can notice this mass in their breasts as they are big enough to be seen visually.

As with other cancer types, breast cancer can spread to surrounding tissues and metastasize. The meaning of this concept is that the disease spreads to another part of the patient's body. Today, patients who can be diagnosed early, before such advanced cases occur, can be easily treated. For example, stage 4 breast cancer is more difficult to treat. A technique called mammography is used for diagnosis.


Breast Cancer Symptoms


Symptoms and signs of breast cancer might show up in many different ways and can vary in each patient. The following are the most common:


  • A new lump in the breast.
  • Pain, swelling, hardening.
  • Retraction of the nipple.
  • Distortion of the breast structure.
  • Peeling of the skin around the nipple.
  • Enlargement of breast veins.


Why breast cancer occurs is one of the most sought-after questions. There may be many reasons for abnormal growth of tissues in the area. Experts are asked if breast cancer is genetic. The answer is yes, so family history of the patient is important. In addition, factors such as age, lifestyle, diet, and radiation exposure time can be counted among the causes of the disease. In women over 40 years of age, breast cancer is much more common than in men.


What are the Types of Breast Cancer?


There are different types of breast cancer and in each case, a biopsy is performed on a sample of the tissue taken from the patient. This is a type of pathological examination. In the invasive type of carcinoma, the cancer has spread further than the top layer of cells where it started. This accounts for the majority of breast cancers. Ductal carcinoma is the most common version in this group.

Noninvasive breast cancer, i.e. breast cancer that has not spread, does not show metastasis. This means that the disease has not spread to a different part of the patient's body from where it originated. In such cases, treatment is relatively easy and the success rate is high. However, this type of cancer is less common than the invasive type. In addition, metastasis can occur in many different parts of the body. Organs in the abdominal region and the brain are the most common sites of metastasis.


What are the Stages of Breast Cancer?


Breast cancer has disease stages just like other types of cancer. It is the stage at which the disease is diagnosed that determines the possibility of treatment and the chance of success. DCIS is considered Stage 0. It is the period when cancerous cells begin to form. At this stage, it is too early to make a clear diagnosis of the disease.

In stage 1 cancers, the tumor is smaller than 2 cm and has not yet spread to the patient's lymph nodes. In the following stage, cancer cells can grow up to 5 cm in size. It may be spread to the lymph nodes, but there are also contrary cases. From stage 3 onwards, it has spread to the lymph nodes. In the last stage, stage 4, the disease has metastasized to other organs, usually the brain, lung, and liver.


How is Breast Cancer Treatment Performed?


Different methods and techniques are used in the treatment of breast cancer. The stage of the disease is very important when determining treatment options. For example, in stage 0, the patient usually does not need chemotherapy after surgery. In stages 1 and 2, the mass is still small and chemotherapy may be given after surgery.

In stage 3, the patient usually receives chemotherapy first, followed by surgery. Here, again, follow-up treatments may be included in the process. In the last stage, surgical intervention is decided according to the spread of cancer. In other words, surgery may not be an option in every stage 4 case. During the operation, the tumor and surrounding tissue are completely removed. Lumpectomy and mastectomy techniques are used. In addition to the surgery, side treatments include radiotherapy, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and immunotherapy. The last treatment method is an area that is still being studied and aims to stimulate the immune system of the patient to fight cancerous tissues.

Breast cancer treatment prices in Turkey vary according to the experience of the specialist, the clinic, and the scope of the treatment. Health International, where you can get immediate support at any stage of your treatment, is just a phone call away. Please reach us via our contact details.

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