Breast Cancer Treatment
Breast cancer treatment methods of various types are available, right from pills to surgery.
Breast cancer is the cancerous growth of cells in the breast. This cancerous growth of cells may either be in the breast milk ducts, lobules or the breast tissue.
The diagnosis procedure for breast cancer involves some breast sparing operations which were not available in the earlier days. Women in order to test for breast cancer or happen to undergo diagnosis involved removal of either a part of the breast or the entire breast for biopsy and further studies earlier.
After the breast cancer was confirmed depending on its type the treatment options are planned determined. There are various methods of treatments available nowadays to help women fight against the dreadful disease and live a better life.
Types of Breast Cancer Treatment
Like many other cancer treatments breast cancer treatment also involves some treatments are standard which are currently used and few are being tested in clinical trials.
Four types of standard treatment for breast cancer are used:
Surgery for Breast Cancer
The first and foremost procedure in breast cancer treatment involves the surgical removal of the breast including some lymph nodes under the arm as well. This tissue is observed under the microscope for further study.
Breast-conserving surgery: Nowadays the breast sparing operations like the below mentioned are performed. An operation to remove the cancer but not the breast itself, includes the following:
- Lumpectomy: A surgical procedure to remove a tumor (lump) and a small amount of normal tissue around it.
- Partial mastectomy: This involves the removal of the part of the breast that contains cancer and some normal tissue around it. This surgical procedure is also called a segmental mastectomy.
The other surgical procedures involve the removal of the whole breast which is termed as the total mastectomy. Another procedure is called the partial radical mastectomy in which the removal of the whole breast along with the lymph nodes under the arm is removed.
In the former procedure this is performed by making a separate incision. The other method is the radical mastectomy in which the breast with cancer, all underarm lymph nodes and the chest wall muscles under the breast are removed
The breast cancer treatment method which uses high-energy x-rays or other types of radiation to kill cancer cells is called the radiation therapy. There are two types of radiation therapy.
External radiation therapy uses a machine outside the body to send radiation toward the cancer. Internal radiation therapy uses a radioactive substance sealed in needles, seeds, wires, or catheters that are placed directly into or near the cancer. The way the radiation therapy is given depends on the type and stage of the breast cancer being treated.
Breast Cancer Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy uses drugs to destroy cancer cells. The doctor may recommend chemotherapy following surgery to kill any cancer cells that may have spread outside the breast.
This breast cancer treatment often involves receiving two or more drugs in different combinations. These may be administered intravenously, in pill form or both. Patient may have four to eight treatments spread over three to six months in regular cycles.
For that matter chemotherapy treatment for any type of cancer involves side effects so in this case. But the recent research and development in science has produced results which provide the patients the drugs used for chemotherapy purpose with minimum side effects.
Breast Cancer Treatment: Hormone therapy
In case of metastatic breast cancer the hormone therapy proves better option than any other method of treatment. This may also be used as an adjuvant breast cancer treatment which aims in preventing the recurrence of the cancer for the women who are diagnosed with early-stage estrogen receptor positive cancer. (Alternative Breast Cancer Treatment?)