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Types & Stages

 
Types & Stages

Chapter: 5 - Types & Stages

Subchapter: 6 - Triple Negative Breast Cancer

In Subchapter 3.1, “Growth of Cancer”, we discussed the role of receptors in cancer cells. Doctors seek to determine what causes certain types of cancer to progress by identifying its “receptors”. These receptors function like mouths: when open, the cancer cells feed and rapidly grow.

Triple Negative Breast Cancer tumors lack receptors for any of three bodily chemicals: estrogen, progesterone, and the HER2/neu gene. There are still effective treatments for it, such as chemotherapy, but doctors are not sure what stimulates this type of tumor to grow.

Women with a family history of breast cancer, specifically with the BRCA1 or BRCA2 breast gene mutation, are more at risk for developing Triple Negative Breast Cancer.

Related Questions

  • Megan Smith Profile

    My mother is having a double mastectomy. Post surgery, what are the advantages of her doing genetic testing? Thanks!

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 8 years 3 answers
    • Anne Marie jacintho Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      Hi Megan genetic testing for the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 are used post surgery as a further test to determine the treatment course. A positive result tells you that you carry the breast cancer gene the doctor might want to be more aggressive with her treatment and maybe suggesting removal of her...

      more

      Hi Megan genetic testing for the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 are used post surgery as a further test to determine the treatment course. A positive result tells you that you carry the breast cancer gene the doctor might want to be more aggressive with her treatment and maybe suggesting removal of her ovaries. A positive results will also help the family members male and female siblings and children get better monitoring and screening like earlier mammograms then age 50 or blood test and ultra sounds to screen for ovarian, prostrate and testicular cancers A negative results says that one doesn't carry the breast cancer gene but they are only testing two genes there maybe more that they are unable to test at this time. A positive or negative result does not mean you will or will not get cancer. It is just saying the gene is or is not present.

      Comment
    • Anne Marie jacintho Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      There are laws out there to protect you after positive gene testing. If you are having problems contact civil right lawyers in your state. You can google there. Site and in Hawaii there is a link for free help

      Comment
  • Kim Curry Profile

    How does genetic testing help

    Asked by anonymous

    Patient
    almost 8 years 2 answers
    • Anne Marie jacintho Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      Genetic testing helps if you have a family history of breast cancer and your brca1 and brca2 (the two genes that are currently being tested) is positive it makes it easier for family members to receive preventive care and monitoring male or female , for any of the reproductive types of cancers....

      more

      Genetic testing helps if you have a family history of breast cancer and your brca1 and brca2 (the two genes that are currently being tested) is positive it makes it easier for family members to receive preventive care and monitoring male or female , for any of the reproductive types of cancers. Breast ovarian prostrate or testicular. As for a women with breast cancer if her gene testing is positive then it gives her other choices to think about. Mastectomy over lumpectomy. Hysterectomy with removal her ovaries. They also might want to treat her a little more aggressive with chemo and radiation. Gene testing is very expensive when I had it done in 2008 it cost $3000 I paid 10% $300 it was covered by my insurance as I met the criteria being 43 when first diagnosed and having a strong family history of breast cancer and prostate cancer. My results were negative go figure. I did it for my sister and my daughter. They could have been monitored more closely if it came back positive. Having the gene testing does not in any way say you will or will not get breast cancer it is just another tool to help make decisions for your course of treatment. Hope that helps

      Comment
    • Anne Marie jacintho Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      Genetic testing helps if you have a family history of breast cancer and your brca1 and brca2 (the two genes that are currently being tested) is positive it makes it easier for family members to receive preventive care and monitoring male or female , for any of the reproductive types of cancers....

      more

      Genetic testing helps if you have a family history of breast cancer and your brca1 and brca2 (the two genes that are currently being tested) is positive it makes it easier for family members to receive preventive care and monitoring male or female , for any of the reproductive types of cancers. Breast ovarian prostrate or testicular. As for a women with breast cancer if her gene testing is positive then it gives her other choices to think about. Mastectomy over lumpectomy. Hysterectomy with removal her ovaries. They also might want to treat her a little more aggressive with chemo and radiation. Gene testing is very expensive when I had it done in 2008 it cost $3000 I paid 10% $300 it was covered by my insurance as I met the criteria being 43 when first diagnosed and having a strong family history of breast cancer and prostate cancer. My results were negative go figure. I did it for my sister and my daughter. They could have been monitored more closely if it came back positive. Having the gene testing does not in any way say you will or will not get breast cancer it is just another tool to help make decisions for your course of treatment. Hope that helps

      Comment
  • Mary Foti Profile

    My mother's breast cancer recurred and is now stage 4. We are both positive for the BRCA2 mutation. I also had breast cancer in 2010. Does my mother's cancer recurrence mean my cancer will come back, too? We were both stage 1 when we were diagnosed.

    Asked by anonymous

    Survivor since 2010
    over 7 years 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      That is very unfortunate news and I am sorry to hear it. I don't think it means that your cancer will return but I think it might be an idea to talk to your doctor about the options to help reduce the chance of it reoccurring. It might be an idea to consider a bi lateral mastectomy if you...

      more

      That is very unfortunate news and I am sorry to hear it. I don't think it means that your cancer will return but I think it might be an idea to talk to your doctor about the options to help reduce the chance of it reoccurring. It might be an idea to consider a bi lateral mastectomy if you haven't already. I have stage 2 IDC and don't have the gene but still chose to have a bilateral for my own peace of mind.

      Comment
    • Trish Watt Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Mary, Sorry to hear of the reoccurrence. I never had the test for BRCA2 but I went through 5 years of watching and waiting. The mental roller coaster I was on was more stressful than deciding and having a bi lateral mastectomy. Making that decision literally and physically lifted a big weight off...

      more

      Mary, Sorry to hear of the reoccurrence. I never had the test for BRCA2 but I went through 5 years of watching and waiting. The mental roller coaster I was on was more stressful than deciding and having a bi lateral mastectomy. Making that decision literally and physically lifted a big weight off of my shoulders. I had Stage I triple negative breast cancer which is a very aggressive type. Having the mastectomy was the best decision I ever made and I don't regret it at all. I'm sure you are younger than I was when diagnosed but who wants that hanging over your head. When you make the decision, and it has to be yours, you'll know it was the light one. Blessing and prayers for your family.

      Comment
  • Allison Mosely Profile

    I've had a bilat mastectomy, scheduled for my ovaries and tubes removed. How much will I benifit from Chemo? I'm BRCA1+, IDC, stage 2b, 2/4 nodes. I know it diminishes my chances for recurrence, but how much?

    Asked by anonymous

    Stage 2B Patient
    almost 8 years 5 answers
    • View all 5 answers
    • Diana Foster Payne Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      Hi Allison, I agree with Donna. Especially since you had 2/4 positive nodes and are BRAC as well. You certainly don't want to look back and wonder why you didn't do the chemo. I completed 8 dose dense treatments in Sept. then had my bilateral mastectomy. My path results showed I had 13/15...

      more

      Hi Allison, I agree with Donna. Especially since you had 2/4 positive nodes and are BRAC as well. You certainly don't want to look back and wonder why you didn't do the chemo. I completed 8 dose dense treatments in Sept. then had my bilateral mastectomy. My path results showed I had 13/15 positive nodes with 2 breaking outside the node. So...my Onc. Recommended 8 more rounds of chemo with two different drugs. I was upset and felt like I was back at square one. But I just think of it as something I must do in order to survive. You are on the right path. God bless you on your road to recovery! Hugs, Diana

      Comment
    • Donna Ginnings Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2001

      Get the chemo, then you will never regret that you didn't take it. I only had 1 node and my cancer returned after 3 years even with chemo, but I didn't have ovaries removed and should have. May God bless and heal you. You are on the right track. Get the chemo and don't look back.

      Comment

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