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Types & Stages

 
Types & Stages

Chapter: 5 - Types & Stages

Subchapter: 8 - Breast Cancer During Pregnancy

Women who are diagnosed with breast cancer during pregnancy have tremendous additional strain due to concern for the safety of the unborn child. It is a traumatic and extremely difficult situation, but there is still hope because of the many treatment options available. If you are pregnant and have been diagnosed, be sure to communicate information about your pregnancy to your doctor. Your medical team will take extra care in designing the treatment plan that best controls the breast cancer while protecting your unborn child.

Your treatment plan will depend on the size of the tumor, its location, and the term of your pregnancy. As with women who are not pregnant, surgery is the first step for treating early-stage breast cancer. Surgery during pregnancy carries little risk to your unborn child, so your medical team will most likely proceed by removing the lump, and possibly some lymph nodes from under the arm, with a lumpectomy or mastectomy.

Chemotherapy may be a treatment option, depending on your cancer type and the stage of your pregnancy. The effects of hormone therapy on unborn children is not entirely understood; because of this, if hormone therapy is prescribed, it will most likely be used only after the baby is born.

Although the cancer cannot spread to and harm the unborn child, sometimes the best treatment plan for the mother may put the unborn child at risk. These decisions will require the expertise and consultation between your obstetrician, surgeon, medical oncologist, and radiation oncologist. You will also need the emotional support of family and friends and may benefit from the professional assistance of a skilled counselor or psychologist.

Related Questions

  • Thumb avatar default

    What does positive for CK AE 1/3, but negative for CD-68, ER and PR. They are suspicious for adenocarcinoma. What does all that mean?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 8 years 3 answers
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      If this diagnosis is for yourself, contact your oncologist, radiologist, surgeon and ask them to translate this for you. If not for you but for a friend or relative, I would say the same thing. I don't have a clue and wouldn't even take much of a guess. "The patient" needs to have a face to...

      more

      If this diagnosis is for yourself, contact your oncologist, radiologist, surgeon and ask them to translate this for you. If not for you but for a friend or relative, I would say the same thing. I don't have a clue and wouldn't even take much of a guess. "The patient" needs to have a face to face appointment to have questions answered. This sounds like a complicated lab report and you need some translation. I am suprised when patients receive this kind of technical report and are left hanging. Hopefully, you or the patient will get some answers soon. I'd be standing on their doorstep to be the first one in line for an appointment. Take care, Sharon

      Comment
    • Mary Foti Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2010

      It is so frustrating to get reports like this, isn't it? I took my path report to another surgeon and an oncologist to get 2nd opinion and a "translation." I was an English major for crying out loud! Anyway, call your oncologist and ask for an appointment to review these results. Typically that...

      more

      It is so frustrating to get reports like this, isn't it? I took my path report to another surgeon and an oncologist to get 2nd opinion and a "translation." I was an English major for crying out loud! Anyway, call your oncologist and ask for an appointment to review these results. Typically that is an appointment that is done anyway, after surgery. Your oncologist will help you interpret these crazy numbers and letters and recommend an appropriate and effective treatment for your stage, type and grade of cancer. If he/she does not explain it to your understanding and/or if you are not comfortable with that oncologist or the recommended treatment, find anther oncologist. Best wishes and please let us know what all of that means when you find out!

      Comment
  • sarah coleman Profile

    I am having pain in my left breast located at my nipple and the nipple is pulling in, should I be worried?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 8 years 8 answers
    • View all 8 answers
    • Diana Foster Payne Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      Sarah, I'll say a prayer for you. Please let us know how you are. There's a great group of caring ladies on here & we'll be here for you anytime!!!

      Comment
    • Diana Foster Payne Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      Yes Sarah....please schedule a Dr. Appt ASAP!! I was also having pain in my right breast and my nipple was slightly inverted. Those can be symptoms of breast cancer. Don't put off going. Sharon is right. MRIs pick up on what mammograms miss. My mammogram missed seeing my cancer. I was diagnosed...

      more

      Yes Sarah....please schedule a Dr. Appt ASAP!! I was also having pain in my right breast and my nipple was slightly inverted. Those can be symptoms of breast cancer. Don't put off going. Sharon is right. MRIs pick up on what mammograms miss. My mammogram missed seeing my cancer. I was diagnosed with stage 3C invasive Ductal carcinoma. Please get checked & let us know how you are.

      Comment
  • William Hosking Profile

    It is a question about how to deal with children of a parent terminally ill - particularly children aged 8 to 10. My daughter is diagnosed with a life expectancy of two years. How are the children to be prepared - and when?

    Asked by anonymous

    Family Member or Loved One
    almost 8 years 8 answers
    • View all 8 answers
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Use whatever services that you can find. I live in the Chicago area and there are some organizations that can help deal with this situation. Also contact American Cancer Society for resources. It's hard to add this effort at such a stressful time. But it may help.

      Comment
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I too am sick I'm leaving behind 3grandkids I'm raising11 6 4 that's hard no answers from me just prayers may God bless you and if the time comes Jesus is there no one is promised tomorrow

      2 comments
  • Thumb avatar default

    What are chances for survival when spread to the liver?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 6 years 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • Rita Jo Hayes Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2009

      I have been battling and maintaining stage IV with mets to lungs since 2009. To me my survival rate is what I choose it to be, stable healthy blessed and happy. A person has to get a mind set that you are in charge and plan the best journey you can and putting the odds in your corner. Keep a...

      more

      I have been battling and maintaining stage IV with mets to lungs since 2009. To me my survival rate is what I choose it to be, stable healthy blessed and happy. A person has to get a mind set that you are in charge and plan the best journey you can and putting the odds in your corner. Keep a positive out look. I'm not saying it is all peachy, but there is good in everything if you look long and hard. Good luck and strong living

      Comment
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      Nobody has a crystal ball. There are probably statistics but there are so many variables it would be useless to try to figure it out. I always figure, statistics are just numbers. Would it make your life BETTER, if you heard some low number thrown at you? You seek treatment, we have lots of...

      more

      Nobody has a crystal ball. There are probably statistics but there are so many variables it would be useless to try to figure it out. I always figure, statistics are just numbers. Would it make your life BETTER, if you heard some low number thrown at you? You seek treatment, we have lots of women who have mets to bone, lung, liver, and are living a life but consider it a chronic disease. Hang in there, Sharon

      Comment

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