What Are The Various Systemic Therapies For Breast Cancer And How Do Doctors Know Which Ones Are Right For Me?

They will then look at the features of the cancer: estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, HER2 protein, lymph node involvement, tumor size, the histologic grade, all of these kinds of features. And they'll get some sense of what the possibilities are for the use of therapy -- which therapies might be appropriate, what would be the potential advantages of the therapy, how might they change breast cancer outcomes in the future, and of course, we would also want to think about the toxicities (the side effects of therapy). So all of these are complicated discussions that involve very much an education of the patient about the features of her breast cancer - the outlook with her breast cancer, what the positive benefits of therapy might be, and what the downsides of therapy are - so that she and her physician can make a decision about how the balance plays out for her.


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PHOTO: Left, Sabrina Allen, 4, is shown in this photo provided by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; right, Sabrina Allen, 17, is seen in this undated handout photo.
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