Breast cancer is a dangerous disease that affects the lives of millions of women around the world. However, few of these know that stage zero cancer is something that can be spotted and treated early, to help prevent the development of a more dangerous type.
Stage-Zero Breast Cancer Is Important to Understand
Most women concerned about breast cancer have likely heard of stages 1-4 but may not know that there is a stage zero. This phase occurs when abnormal cells exist within certain cells of the breasts, usually in the lining of the milk ducts. These abnormal cells are not yet cancerous and are not a tumor but could become cancerous in the future if the mutate any further or get stimulated to mutate.
The scary thing about this type of cancer is that many women may have these abnormal cells for years – sometimes even most of their life – without realizing it. And while many never develop breast cancer, those who do may end up with worse cases. And since stage zero shows no symptoms, regular mammograms and treatments are essential for avoiding the dangers of breast cancer for good.
Treatment Is a Critical Step for Recovery
Mammograms and various types of X-rays can detect stage zero tissue in a woman's breasts. She then has a few treatment options. First of all, she may want to get no treatment if the tissue is small enough but simply wait to see what happens. This step is usually not recommended because treatments, such as chemotherapy and even radiation, can cause these cells to shrink.
Surgery, though, may be a good option because the cells are not cancerous yet and can be more easily removed. Often, the amount of flesh removed is quite minimal and may leave only slight scars that go away over time. Though it will require cutting away a little more flesh around the cells, the amount is still very minor compared to that which is removed with worse cancer stages.
After treatment, it is important to remember that, while these cells are gone, a woman's risk of breast cancer isn't negated. There is a chance that abnormal cells may grow back later. Therefore, women who go through stage-zero breast cancer treatment still need to get regular checkups and mammograms to ensure that they don't end up back into surgery in the future.
Contact a breast cancer treatment service to learn more.