How long does it take for untreated breast cancer to metastasize?
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Questions About Breast Cancer
How long does it take for untreated breast cancer to metastasize?Non-doctors need not offer your opinions. I'm looking for educated facts.My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer about a year and a half ago. I haven't been in close contact with her for many years (she's an insufferable NPD), and scantly with my sisters for the last year mostly because of this. I eventually found out that at the time of her diagnosis her cancer had invaded the chest wall, and then a few months later they discovered a brain tumor linked to the cancer after initially believing she had suffered a stroke.A little background, several years ago, my mother said that mammograms at her age (70s) was purely for doctors to make money and she wasn't going to have them. My sisters were not privy to the conversation. Mom was basically echoing the stubbornness of her mother, but she was in her late 80s or early 90s when she started saying no (she died at 97). My mother also does many other dumb things related to her health thinking she knows better than the doctors because of something she read. So there's no reason for me to believe she didn't follow through with not having mammograms.In a recent spat with my sister, I mentioned mom suffering the consequences of her own poor choices in response to my sister trying to lay in a guilt trip for my not visiting her (she didn't become a saint just because she got sick). She claimed mom was dutiful about yearly mammograms. I'm pretty sure that's what mom is saying NOW, but I can't imagine that yearly mammograms wouldn't have revealed cancer long before it would have time to not only invade the chest wall, but also met to her brain. What is the usual timeline for the progression of untreated cancer? And even when treated with chemo on the assumption it was simply aggressive, what's the timeline for a walnut-sized brain tumor? I just don't believe she had the mammos and I think the level of the cancer proves this.
Sorry to hear that, but only a Medical Oncologist can really answer those kind of questions.
I am not a doctor, but I do not see how that makes my opinion any less worthy.Other than her age, which is more helpful than most people, and a vague timeline you are not giving us much information. Like what kind of breast cancer is it? What is the grade? What are her hormone receptors? These things tell us how aggressive a cancer is.I can tell you it takes about 2 years before breast cancers are large enough to be seen on imaging. If the cancer invaded her chest wall by direct extension she could have had mets in a year, but as I said you are not telling us enough to know. Also just so you know, it is very important that any woman reading this understands that whenever you have a mammogram you should ALWAYS have the previous 1-2 mammograms with you for comparison. This is almost as important as having the mammogram itself, as it makes it easier for doctors to spot cancer early. I see cases all the time where cancer could have been caught a year earlier if the doctor had something to compare to.No one asks for cancer regardless of how often they have exams and to blame it on the patient is simply worng.If she the the mammos or not does not matter now.
I am educated, because I HAD Breast Cancer. My Cousin had a lump that SHE Ignored for 1 Year. And she is NOW at a stage 4, that has spread to her lungs and bones. 1 Year is her experience...but it can happen earlier than that.
first of all, there are different kinds of breast cancer. Not all cancers spread fast. She could have a tumor that's considered in situ, meaning, is localized or one that's invasive, meaning it can and will spread to other tissue and cells and can metastasize elsewhere. You see, we can't tell you how long she will live, or how bad it will get because we don't have the particulars. It makes a huge difference. Your mom is in her 70's, so what if she chose not to have the mammograms and kept to herself. It's her choice and her life. She may feel at her age. why bother. I know my mom did. My mother never had a PAP smear, nor mammogram and never got any kind of cancer. She was very blessed. and lived to be 96. My sister had a very aggressive breast cancer and it was taken care of as fast as the doctor could get his scrubs on. 5 yrs after her "survival" rate, she developed brain tumors. Upon removal, they found that they contained breast cancer cells. All cancers can go where they want when left untreated but it's the one with the cancer that has to yes to treatments of any kind. No Dr will force her or anyone else to do this. I say, you should get to know your mom before things get bad and if they do you want to be there for her. Put your differences aside and swallow your pride. It's her turn now. she needs her family, not strangers. I'm just saying. Hope she does well. God bless.
It is really impossible to answer this because of the different types of Cancer.Some are very very nasty, and can matastisize in months rather than years. Only with biopsy and or surgery and knowing the type of cancer cells can determine the answer to the question you ask.
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