pink breast cancer awareness ribbon

What is Metastatic Breast Cancer?

During the month of October I'm sure you're seeing a lot of pink and hearing a lot about breast cancer awareness, but do you know what metastatic breast cancer is? Metastatic breast cancer is when cancer cells have spread to other parts of a patient's body. It's possible for a breast tumor to turn into metastatic breast cancer which is also referred to as stage IV. It basically means that the cancer is no longer in one area, but has spread throughout your body. 

Metastatic Breast Cancer

According to BreastCancer.org, "Nearly 30% of women diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer will develop metastatic disease." However, a metastatic diagnosis is not a death sentence. Many people with this degree of cancer go on to live for a very long time due to advancements in treatments and medicines. Plus, with all the research we are working to fund each day with our jewelry, more and more medicines & treatments are being discovered and tested. 

woman with metastatic breast cancer smiling

There is no way to cure metastatic breast cancer, but it can be kept under control. Many metastatic patients live many productive years after their diagnosis and are even able to go years between treatments. The prognosis of survival just gets better and better with each passing day because of all the research being done to help cure breast cancer. 

Prevention

Early detection & diagnosis are the best way to avoid metastatic breast cancer. Make sure you're doing regular monthly self-breast exams and seeing your doctor to be checked yearly. Talk to your doctor about any family history or concerns you may have. The sooner you are diagnosed with breast cancer & begin treatment, the more likely you are to have a positive outcome and catch it before it can spread. Although this is not a guarantee, because some times it will become metastatic no matter what you do. 

While no one wants to receive a breast cancer diagnosis, at least there is hope. The daily advancements in research are creating a promising future for breast cancer patients, and hopefully one day, we'll be able to cure all types and stages of breast cancer. 

Now that we've gone over what metastatic breast cancer is, what other questions do you have? Let me know in the comments below!

For more detailed information about metastatic breast cancer symptoms, diagnosis & treatments, please visit BreastCancer.org.

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