The cancer which originates from breast tissues is referred as breast cancer. This cancer is found mostly in women though few men have also been diagnosed with this type cancer. Cancer spreads in the body through any of these viz. tissue, lymph system or blood. Breast cancer is staged from roman letter zero to four. Each stage describes the extent of proliferation of cancer in the body.
Looking at the test reports of a female who has been diagnosed with breast cancer, the doctor determines the stage of her cancer. On the basis of cancer stage, further treatment is carried on. Stage of cancer is based on the size of the cancer, if the cancer is invasive or non invasive, if the cancer is in the lymph nodes and if the cancer has spread in other parts of the body. These four things majorly determine the cancer stages.
Types Of Breast Cancer Stages
This stage is medically called as breast carcinoma in situ (CIS). In this stage cancer remains in non invasive condition and abnormal cells are found only in the lining of the breast duct and has not spread out to the other tissues of the breast.
This stage is the invasive stage of breast cancer. The abnormal cells start spreading to the normal cells outside the breast. Stage I is further categorized into Stage IA and IB. In this stage, abnormal invasive cells form tumor that measures up to 2 centimeters.
The cells can also remain in small groups and not form tumor at all. These small clusters of cells can be found in lymph nodes. The small cells measure between 0.2 to 2 millimeters.
This stage is also further categorized into IIA and IIB. The tumor grows to attain size between 2 to 5 centimeters. The cancer might or might not have spread to the lymph nodes present in underarms. Another case of stage II is when the tumor is bigger than 5 centimeters but it has not yet spread to lymph nodes. Yet another case of stage II is when the cancer cells are found in 1-3 lymph nodes.
Stage III is categorized into IIIA, IIIB and IIIC. The doctor will call this stage as locally or regionally advanced cancer.
Cancer will spread to nearby areas of the body like underarms, collar bones and areas surrounding breasts. Cancer has spread to lymph nodes and the nodes also spread to surrounding nodes.
In this stage of breast cancer, cancer has spread to other organs like lungs, skin, bones, brain and liver among others. Cancer also spreads to various lymph nodes.
This is another stage of breast cancer through which doctors describe the look and feel of the breast cancer. T stands for Tumor, N stands for Lymph nodes and M stands for Metastasized i.e. if the cancer has proliferated to cells outside breast. Each one of them is described in detail based on the stages mentioned above.