Having cancer isn’t a death sentence anymore, because there are numerous kinds of treatments. Women who have breast cancer shouldn’t panic, because there are treatments for breast cancer available as well. Some of the treatments are considered standard, while others are clinical trials, which are trying to find new treatments that later would become standard ones.
At the moment there are six standard treatments used: surgery, sentinel lymph node biopsy and surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and targeted therapy.
Treatments for Breast Cancer : Surgery
The majority of the patients have surgery to get rid of the cancerous cells from the affected area. Some lymph nodes from the underarm are taken out to see whether they have any cancerous cells.
In case surgery is used as breast cancer treatment, in some cases it is possible to have a surgery that conserves the breast, like lumpectomy or partial mastectomy. In other cases it is not possible to conserve the breast and in such situations the surgeons opt for total mastectomy, modified radical mastectomy, or radical mastectomy.
Chemotherapy might be used prior to the surgery because it makes the tumor shrink so it is easier to remove. After surgery the patient could receive chemotherapy, radiation therapy or hormone therapy to kill the cancerous cells that have been left behind. In case of mastectomy a lot of women choose to have breast reconstruction right after the surgery or sometime in the future.
Sentinel lymph node biopsy and surgery as one of the treatments for breast cancer. During these treatments, the sentinel lymph node is removed as part of the surgery. This is the primary lymph node to get lymphatic drainage in case of a tumor. It is also the first node that the cancer usually spreads to. A certain kind of substance is introduced near the tumor that gets to the lymph node through the lymph ducts.
In case radiation is used as breast cancer treatment, x-rays or other kinds of radiations will be used to kill the cancerous cells or to stop their growth. We have to consider two kinds of radiation therapies used in case of treatments for breast cancer: external and internal. In case of external radiation there is a machine used that sends the rays to the affected cells, while in case of internal radiation the radioactive substance is injected right into the tumor or near it.
Chemotherapy as breast cancer treatment
This kind of treatment uses drugs in order to kill the cancerous cells or to stop their growth. It can be taken orally or it can be injected directly into the body through the blood stream or muscular mass. This way it gets into the circulatory system and it is transported to the affected area. In case it is injected into an organ, or it is introduced through the cerebrospinal fluid, it affects the cells that can be found in that area.
Hormone therapy as breast cancer treatment
Through this type of treatments for breast cancer the hormones as removed or blocked to stop the growth of the cancer cells.