What is breast cancer?
Breast cancer is cancer that occurs in the tissue of the breast. It happens when mutations happen in the gene that causes cell growth, these cells then divide and grow rapidly spreading all around the body. It is more common among women than men. Breast cancer surgery is the solution for it.
In this article, Dr.Garvit chitkara, who is one of the top breast cancer surgeons in Mumbai, and has an experience of above 14 plus years in treating breast cancer, talks about breast cancer and its symptoms and treatments.
What are some symptoms of breast cancer?
In the beginning stages, symptoms of breast cancer might not be noticeable. The first sign of breast cancer might be a lump on the breast, and it is important to know that not all lumps are a sign of breast cancer; it could be a benign cyst, says Dr. Garvit chikara. If you have any personal queries you can contact the doctor directly here clinicspots
Below are some symptoms of breast cancer:
- If there is swelling around or in your breast
- Discolored skin
- A new lump around the breast that feels thick
- Breast pain
- Any bloody discharge from the nipple
- Swelling or lump on the underarm
- Peeling or flaking of the skin around the breast
Types of breast cancer
There are several types of breast cancer; they are mainly divided into two primary categories that are Invasive breast cancer and non-invasive breast cancer.
Invasive breast cancer
When the cancer cells begin to spread to other areas of the breast tissue it is called invasive breast cancer. The two most common types of invasive breast cancer are:
Invasive Ductal Carcinoma
Invasive ductal carcinoma is when breast cancer starts in the milk ducts and then spreads to the surrounding area. Invasive ductal carcinoma is the most common type of breast cancer that affects around 80% of people.
Invasive Lobular Carcinoma
Invasive Lobular Carcinoma Is an invasive breast cancer that grows in the milk-producing glands.
Inflammatory breast cancer
In this type, the cells block off the lymph nodes so that the lymph nodes don’t drain properly, and this causes swelling of the breast. This type can progress very quickly; hence it is important to let the doctor know.
Triple-negative breast cancer
Triple-negative breast cancer happens when a breast cancer tumor has these matching criteria as follows
Lacks estrogen receptors
Lacks progesterone receptors
It doesn’t have additional HER2 proteins
Non-invasive breast cancer types
Non-invasive breast cancer means that the cancer cells have not spread beyond the breast tissue.
Ductal carcinoma in situ
Ductal carcinoma in situ is when cancer that started in the milk ducts has not spread to other tissue
Lobular carcinoma in situ
LCS is non-invasive breast cancer that has not spread outside the milk glands where it started. Also, note that Lobular carcinoma is a benign breast condition and is not a true type of cancer.
Breast cancer treatment
A few things need to be taken into account before determining what type of treatment you will be getting. Your cancer stage, the size of your tumor, and how far cancer has reached, everything is important for the treatment.
The most common type of treatment is surgery. Other types include chemotherapy, radiation, hormone therapy, etc. Dr Garvit chitkara has been performing different types of treatments as needed for patients with breast cancer.
Types of surgery
- Some breast cancer surgery treatments include,
- Axillary lymph nodes dissection
- Sentinel node biopsy
- Contralateral prophylactic
During radiation therapy, high radiation beams are targeted to kill cancer cells from outside the body. As both cancer cells and healthy cells are destroyed during this process, the doctors see that the number of healthy cells destroyed is as less as possible. Normal cells can repair the damage caused by radiation
Medical advancements have made it possible to destroy the cancer cells from inside the body; this method is called brachytherapy.
Chemotherapy uses chemical drugs to kill the rapidly-growing cancer cells in the body. Chemotherapy is often used with other combinations of treatments like surgeries or radiation therapy.
While chemotherapy is an effective way to kill the growing cancer cells, it can also cause some complications; while some complications might be mild, others might be more severe.
Female hormones called estrogen and progesterone can stimulate the growth of breast tumors.
Hormone therapy works by stopping your body from growing hormones or blocking hormone receptors on the cancer cells. This can help slow down the growth of tumors.
While cancer is never an easy topic to deal with, medical advancements have made it possible to get the required treatments and surgeries. To deal with any type of cancer, it takes a lot of courage and patience to undergo the treatments and hope for the best results.
There is still ongoing research to find out more about cancer and find a complete cure for it.