The breast cancer is the most common cancer in the female around the world and it is the second most common cancer in female in India. There are few important facts about breast cancer for your awareness.
DCIS stands for ductal carcinoma in-situ, which means cancerous cells have started to grow within one of the milk-ducts of breast. If the cells were still confined to the milk duct, you would be classified as having a Stage 0 breast cancer. But if doctor has indicated that some cancer cells have spread into the surrounding breast tissue it is termed as micro-invasion. Stage 0 breast cancer suggests have an excellent chance of a successful outcome, major treatment advances have been made in recent years and patients prospects are much more promising than they used to be. In fact, the five-year survival rate for women diagnosed with Stage 0 breast cancer is 99 per cent.
In general though, women diagnosed with-
Stage 1 in which the tumour is two centimetres or smaller in size and the cancer has not spread outside the breast can be fairly optimistic they will beat the disease. The five-year survival rate for this group is about 90-95 per cent.
Stage 2 in which the cancer has reached the lymph nodes. The five-year survival rate for this group is about 75-85 per cent.
Stage 3 – in which the cancer has spread to nearby tissue outside the breast such as the chest wall – the survival rate drops down to 45-55 per cent.
Stage 4 – in which the cancer has metastasized, spreading to distant parts of the body the 5-year survival is about 10-20 per cent.
The encouraging news is that the vast majority of breast cancer now, about 80 per cent are diagnosed when they are still in the early stages, either 1 or 2, But it’s clear that significant progress is being made in the fight against breast cancer.
Back in the 1960s, the combined five-year survival rate for all four stages of breast cancer was 35-45 per cent but the mid-1980s, that figure had climbed to 60-70 per cent. Today it’s up to 75-80 per cent.
Part of those gains are due to advancement in diagnostic procedure, introductions of newer research molecules, adapting advance mode of technology in delivering treatment.
Introduction of population-wide mammogram-screening programs have led to an improvement in early detection of the disease in many women.
The concept of breast conservation surgery in early stage of disease has shown similar outcome compare to whole breast removal. So it has helped lots of women with early stage disease not to remove their breast completely and it has got huge psychosocial impact.
The advancement in radation therapy including Intensity modulated radiotherapy, Volumetric arc therapy, Image guided brachytherapy all have helped to maximise the radiation dose confined to the tumor cavity with reducing the toxicity to the surrounding tissue and can be delivered in less period of time. So it has helped to get a maximum result with very good cosmetic outcome without any significant side effects.
There was remarkable advancement in chemotherapy, biological targeted therapy, hormonal therapy as well and all these newer medications are tailored to deal with very specific aspects of the patient’s cancer.
We now know that adopting certain lifestyles can affect a woman’s chances of keeping cancer at bay. Studies have shown that a low-fat diet and regular exercise can reduce the risk of recurrence and lower the chance of death in women with early-stage cancer.“This type of information wasn’t available in the past, but these are things that we can now recommend to women as they are going through their cancer journey.