Breast Cancer Program
This video provides an overview of the Breast Cancer Program at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. The clinicians at SCCA are specialists that focus only on breast cancer, and are teachers and researchers that often have access to new drugs and regimens not available in other programs. They work as a team in a multidisciplinary way, with input from surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, geneticists and plastic surgeons, to provide the best treatment recommendations for each patient.
Breast Cancer Surgery
Dr. Sara Javid Discusses Surgery Options for Breast Cancer Patients There?s a one in eight chance that a woman will have breast cancer in her lifetime. Most who do undergo some type of surgery to remove it. One option available is a lumpectomy, where only the tumor is removed, rather than the entire breast. This is typically followed by a course of radiation to the breast. Dr. Sara Javid, Surgical Oncologist at SCCA, states that after 25 years of follow up, we now know that this procedure is equally safe in terms of survival and recurrence risk of cancer in the breast. SCCA uses a multi disciplinary team approach to treating patients. This gives patients the full picture up front of what to expect and what options are available to them, empowering them to make choices as they move forward with their breast cancer treatment at SCCA.
Breast Cancer Treatment
Dr. Larissa Korde discusses the options for treating breast cancer, including surgery, radiation, and systemic therapy. Surgically removing the tumor is one of the most important aspects of treating breast cancer and is almost always recommended. Radiation is used to target and kill any cancer cells that may remain after surgery. Radiation is always recommended after a lumpectomy, but often not recommended after a mastectomy. Following surgery, the local lymph nodes are evaluated--a procedure that's known as a sentinel lymph node biopsy--to see if the cancer has the potential to spread. Systemic therapies include chemotherapy, hormonal, and targeted therapies. Chemotherapy uses medicines to kill rapidly divining cells, but has toxicity and negative side effects. Hormonal therapies use pills to reduce hormone levels or block receptors, reducing the risk of recurrence by up to 50%. Targeted therapies are drugs specifically targeted to one abnormality, the most common of which is Herceptin.
Breast Cancer Biology, Stages, and Types
Dr. Larissa Korde provides an overview of breast cancer biology, stages, and types. Breast cancer is the growth of abnormal cells in breast. The stages of development are hyperplasia, atypical hyperplasia, non-invasive cancer or carcinoma in situ, and finally invasive cancer. Dr. Korde explains the stages of breast cancer, ranging from Stage 0, a non-invasive cancer, to Stage 4, a cancer that has spread to other organs. Other factors that an oncologist will look at are the receptors that the cancer expresses. Two hormone receptors are estrogen and progesterone, which is treated with hormone therapy. Another receptor is HER2, which treated with HER2 targeted therapy. Triple Negative is a subtype of breast cancer that does not express any of the latter three receptors and is generally treated with chemotherapy. Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare, but aggressive cancer invading the skin tissue