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Metastatic Breast Cancer in Liver by Ogulbyabek Annayeva

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Metastatic breast cancer in the liver is breast cancer that has spread from its original site, which is the breast to the liver.  The liver is the second most common area the breast cancer spreads to, the first being the bones. The breast cancer that matures where it first started in the breast is so-called the primary cancer. The place where it spreads to which is the liver and begins growing there is called secondary cancer. The secondary cancer can also be referred to as metastasis. This type of cancer considered being a stage four cancer. Even if the breast cancer spreads to the liver it will still be treated as breast cancer and not liver cancer. It will be still breast cancer because the cancer cells that have spread to the liver are commonly found in breast cancer cells. I will deliberate how metastatic breast cancer spreads in the body, what treatment can be used to cure this cancer, and the life expectancy of this type of cancer.

One of the ways breast cancer can spread in the human body is through the lymphatic system.  When this happens the cancer cells separate from the major area of breast cancer and travel in circulating lymph fluid. The breast cancer cells can travel and start dividing in nearly any part of the human body. Cancer cells travel until they get stuck in small channels inside lymph nodes and when that happens they start to divide and multiply to develop new tumors.  The second way breast cancer cells can spread through the human body is through blood circulation. Similar to the spread through the lymphatic system during the spreading through blood circulation the breast cancer cells first break off from the original cancer. Then the breast cancer cells pass across the wall of the blood vessel to get into the bloodstream.  Once the breast cancer cell is in the bloodstream it can travel to any area of the body and start to divide and create secondary tumors called micrometastases.

The treatment for metastatic breast cancer will vary depending on the primary cancer, the location of the cancer, the size of the cancer, and the general health of the person and their condition. Nevertheless, the first step starts with therapy that involves medications. Most commonly metastatic breast cancer would be treated with systemic therapy; because once it spreads it is in the body and can spread more, that’s why the local therapy will not benefit in this case anymore. Treating metastatic cancer by local therapy such as surgery will only make the cancer spread to other parts of the body. Therefore, metastatic breast cancer must be treated with systemic therapy. Some examples of systemic therapies include chemotherapy, biological therapy, targeted therapy, and hormonal therapy.

Life expectancy for metastatic breast cancer is very low. The years go down, as the stage of the cancer goes up. Metastatic breast cancer is the most advanced form of breast cancer. Therefore, not very many people survive or live long with this cancer. According to the Mayo Clinic, five years or less survival is predicted for a patient diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.  Nevertheless, life expectancy is going up year by year due to many new advanced treatments.


Breast cancer organization


Brain Metsbc


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Breast Cancer Resource Directory of North Carolina

http:// bcresourcedirectory.org/directory/03-advanced_breast_cancer.htm


National Cancer Institute



Cancer Research UK



Oxford University Press




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