• Breast cancer primarily develops in the breast, however it is possible for cancer cells to spread to just about anywhere in the body. This is known as secondary breast cancer and is most commonly found in the bone, the lungs, the liver, and the brain.
• Six types of standard treatment:
i. Most patients with breast cancer have surgery to remove the cancer. Brest-conserving surgery, an operation to remove the cancer but not the breast itself includes:
1. Lumpectomy; Surgery to remove a tumor and small amount of normal tissue around it.
2. Partial mastectomy; surgery to remove the part of the breast that has cancer and some normal tissue around it. The lining over the chest muscles below the cancer may also be removed.
3. Total mastectomy; Surgery to remove the whole breast that has cancer. Some of the lymph nodes under the arm may be removed for biopsy at the same time as the breast surgery or after.
2. Sentinel lymph node biopsy flowed by surgery
i. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is the removal of the sentinel lymph node during surgery. The sentinel lymph node is the first lymph node to receive lymphatic drainage from a tumor. It is the first lymph node the cancer is likely to spread to from the tumor. A radioactive substance and/or blue dye is injected near the tumor. The substance or dye flows through the lymph ducts to the lymph nodes. The first lymph node to receive the substance or dye is removed. A pathologist views the tissue under a microscope to look for cancer cells. If cancer cells are not found, it may not be necessary to remove more lymph nodes. After the sentinel lymph node biopsy, the surgeon removes the tumor.
3. Radiation Therapy
i. Radiation therapy is a cancer treatment that uses high-energy x-rays or other types of radiation to kill cancer cells or keep them from growing. There are two types of radiation therapy. External radiation therapy uses a machine outside the body to send radiation toward the cancer. Internal...