Understanding Inflammatory Breast Cancer
There are, as we have explained before, different types of breast cancer, and inflammatory breast cancer is one of them. This is a rare disease (found in both men and women) that can become fatal if left untreated. In fact, the odds are never favorable with inflammatory breast cancer due to the current treatment skills. Still, it is essential to catch it early to increases chances. Having a regular mammogram is the best way for that and you should schedule one with your doctor yearly, at the least.
Inflammatory breast cancer forms quite differently than others of its kind; its symptoms are easier to spot, but no less deadly. It is also important to recognize the difference between inflammatory breast cancer and a simple infection. While the two can share similar symptoms, as we will illustrate below, an infection is easily treated with antibiotics. And the great difference is that an infection will cause a fever while inflammatory breast cancer does not. Spotting that difference is essential as it can keep you from mistaking this as something less serious than what it is.
The symptoms that usually develop with this cancer are these:
- The breast will appear red in color.
- The breast will usually be swollen and tender, painful to touch.
- The nipple can become swollen.
- Skin around the nipple can begin to crust or scab.
- Skin texture will turn pitted.
- The breast will itch.
- The breast may feel warm but this is not to be confused with a fever.
If you are experiencing these signs then you may very well have inflammatory breast cancer and should seek immediate help. Too many people think this is a simple infection and leave it alone. That is what can kill you. As blunt as that statement may seem, it is no less true. Mistaking this for something less serious is how it spreads and kills. You need to know the difference.
Of course, having yourself regularly checked by a doctor is the best way for that. Even if you know the symptoms, you should not have to wait until they appear to learn you have inflammatory breast cancer. Getting regular tests can increase your chances greatly for survival. This is a deadly disease and, even with the options of chemotherapy, surgery and radiation, you need to do all you can. Statistically, the chances for surviving inflammatory breast cancer are not as high as one would hope. Half can easily succumb to it. Still, treatment is improving every day and steps are being taken to raise that number.
The best way to do that, however, is to fight it early on. Get tested and understand the signs. By doing that, you give yourself a much better chance to survive. The worst thing you can do with inflammatory breast cancer is to be ignorant of it, or any other cancer for that matter. Knowledge is, to quote the cliche, power. If you know what you are dealing with, you are less likely to be surprised by it. And that means everything.
Go To: Breast Cancer