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What is triple negative breast cancer?

Jenna Lichty Profile
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Learning About Breast Cancer almost 9 years
  • Sarah Adams Profile
    Survivor since 2010
    I hope this information helps! If you are under the age of 40 & have a family history of breast cancer, I recommend genetic testing for the BRCA mutation. From what I know, many women who are BRCA positive & diagnosed with breast cancer are diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer. From the website: http://www.tnbcfoundation.org/index.html It is only in the last few years that professionals studying breast cancer have concluded that breast cancer is not one disease, but many different forms of cancer all originating in the breast. Depending on its stage of diagnosis, triple negative breast cancer can be extremely aggressive and more likely to recur and metastasize than other subtypes of breast cancer. It typically is responsive to chemotherapy, although it can be more difficult to treat because it is unresponsive to the most effective receptor targeted treatments. These subtypes of breast cancer are generally diagnosed based upon the presence, or lack of, three "receptors" known to fuel most breast cancers: estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). The most successful treatments for breast cancer target these receptors. Unfortunately, none of these receptors are found in women with triple negative breast cancer. In other words, a triple negative breast cancer diagnosis means that the offending tumor is estrogen receptor-negative, progesterone receptor-negative and HER2-negative, thus giving rise to the name "triple negative breast cancer." On a positive note, this type of breast cancer is typically responsive to chemotherapy. Because of its triple negative status, however, triple negative tumors generally do not respond to receptor targeted treatments. Depending on the stage of its diagnosis, triple negative breast cancer can be particularly aggressive, and more likely to recur than other subtypes of breast cancer. I recommend going to the following link & scrolling down to "Download a copy of our Guide to Understanding Triple Negative Breast Cancer" http://www.lbbc.org/Understanding-Breast-Cancer/Guides-to-Understanding-Breast-Cancer/Guide-to-Understanding-Triple-Negative-Breast-Cancer
    almost 9 years Comment Flag
  • Alison Soule Profile
    Survivor since 2011
    In other words, I'm cancer free and not on tamoxifen because triple negative tumors don't respond to it. It's scary to read about it, but a lot of the info is outdated. I just go right to my doctor and the nurses rather than Google.
    almost 7 years Comment Flag

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