It is critical for women to make sure that they are always in good health. However, there are plenty of potential problems that lurk in the background that can victimize women anytime. One of the most dreaded diseases that is a threat to women is inflammatory breast cancer.
The mention of the term “breast cancer” is already enough to make most women cringe at the haunting difficulties that the disease brings. Because the disease is a known killer in women, it becomes very important to try to avoid it, or if affected already, to endeavor at minimizing the symptoms that one may feel.
What is Inflammatory Breast Cancer?
Inflammatory breast cancer is a type of breast cancer that is characterized with the breasts looking red and swollen. The cancer can attack women at any age. What is more alarming is that unlike the regular breast cancer or other breast-related problems, the disease is not characterized by lumps. This characteristic makes detection of the disease very difficult because it cannot be detected by mammography or ultrasound.
The Symptoms of Inflammatory Breast Cancer
Inflammatory breast cancer is known to be an aggressive type of breast cancer. In the disease, the cancer cells blocks the lymph vessels in the skin of the breast. The disease got its name from the inflammation that is exercised by the breasts, resulting in the reddish color. The disease is known to manifest itself in as quick a time frame as overnight.
The following are the symptoms of inflammatory breast cancer:
* The breast becomes harder or firmer. * The affected breast is warmer compared to the unaffected one. * There is an itching on the affected breast. * The lymph nodes swell, especially under the arm or in the neck area. * The breasts may have bruises that do not heal. * A sudden and unexplained swelling of the breast. * Pain in the affected breast. * The reddened area in the affected breast is characterized by the thickness and the texture of orange. * There are skin changes on the affected breast.
Inflammatory breast cancer is also classified into three stages. This is to make treatment better: The symptoms characteristic to a particular stage requires the kind of treatment fit for an infection in that stage. * Stage 3B: In this stage, the cancer has spread to the tissues nearest to the breast, especially in the chest wall. * Stage 3C: This means that the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes in the collarbone. It also means infection to areas near the neck as well as under the arms. * Stage 4. This is the most advanced stage of the cancer. In this stage, the infection has spread to other organs like the lungs and liver. It may have spread also to the bones.
Treatment of Inflammatory Breast Cancer
Chemotherapy is still the best means to kill the cancer. This is commonly done before surgery. On the other hand, other methods include radiation therapy to kill the cancer cells. Because radiation therapy is more specific in targeting the cancer cells, it is now gaining popularity fast as a good method for treating the cancer.