Breast Cancer/ Carcinoma of the Breast

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Staging / Classification

Today the accepted staging for breast cancer is the TNM classification which takes into consideration the tumor itself, the involvement of the lymph nodes and the metastasis to other body parts. The mode of treatment best
suited for each patient and the prognosis is closely linked to the stage of the tumor.
  • STAGE 0: In Situ ("in place") disease in which the cancerous cells are in their original location within normal breast tissue
  • STAGE I
    : Tumor that is less than 2 cm in diameter with no spread beyond the breast
  • STAGE II: Tumor that is 2 to 5 cm in size without spread to lymph nodes of axilla or tumor less than 2 cm in size with spread to axillary lymph nodes
  • STAGE III: Tumor that is smaller than 5 cm in size with spread to axillary lymph nodes which are attached to each other or to other structures
  • STAGE IV: A tumor that is of any size, which spread beyond the region of the breast and chest wall, such as to liver, bone, or lungs
Each tumor is classified histologically into the following:
  • well-differentiated tumors (low grade) - resembles normal tissue
  • poorly differentiated tumors (high grade) - composed of disorganized cells, does not resemble normal tissue
  • Moderately differentiated tumors (intermediate grade) has charecteristics that resemble both of the above

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Saying incidence of breast cancer [or any disease] is high in western world is meaningless. In India, we do not have proper statistics in any hospital. We do not have well established Biostatistics dept in any of our hospitals/universities. Moreover, we do not have any proper centralized system of collecting such data as they have in the US as NIH. Apart from this, still more than 65% of our population are in rural areas where basic treatment itself is at stake. So, we do not have any rights whatsoever to comment on the western world.

I agree.I have been conducting training programmes for women on early detction of breast cancer.Main focus has been breast sed to about 9000 women over the past 3 years.If there is nothing much we can do for prevention then early detection has to be the main focus.
dr.anita khokhar.M.D.

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