Sorry if this has already been mentioned, but when I was dx'ed in Dec 07(aged 39 also), I was told that by my surgeon that 80% of women of my age are Grade 3 - as I was. So, it's obviously very common in the younger age groups ( I believe under 50 is considered young in bc terms!). All the best,
hi i had grade 3 idc when i was 39 i am now 54 and doing great positive thinking and a good family to help makes it easier i lost my hair so had it shaved had chemo and tamoxifen for 5 years i had mastectomy and then had reconstrution using tummy and it looks great best thing i ever did there is always light at the end of the tunnel you just have to stay focused and just think of yourself getting better hope this helps someone
im havin 6 fec,i had a lumpectomy then i had to have a mascectomy cause no clear margins, but the results was all clear from the second op didnt know if to laugh or cry,do you still come on here alot i think i will be the same take care xxxx
Yes, had chemo - 3 FEC and 3 Taxotere. Had 30 rads in total including 5 booster rads to the tumour site and then herceptin. Was dx in May 2006. What chemo are you having? Love xxx
You have a very similar dx to me. Mine was grade 3, 1.7 cm, er- pr+, two micromets in the sentinel node but I was also HER-2+ Am currently on tamoxifen for PR+ and because I am pre-menopausal. Not sure how long I will be on tamoxifen for. My PR+ score was 89% I think you should speak to your Onc about it. Love xxx
hi sue,i wondered if u could help me i had a 17mm grade 3 tumour with 1 lymph node,i was erneg but pr pos will i have hormone treatment i dont really understand it,u said u had a good prognosis would mine be simular xxxx
Hi yes I also was not told what treatment until after surgery like Lulu says I think until they know exactly what there dealing with they dont like to say , just had 5th chemo and not doing to bad so chin up and this is a fab site for loads of suppport and advise .
droopy they dont always know accurately before surgery... the biopsy generally distinguishes between cancerous and non-cancerous cells and can sometimes tell which grade it is... however they can only really get the true picture once they have removed it and analysed the whole thing.... then it may be found that the cancer was a higher grade or that some lymph nodes were involved or there were more areas involved or even whether its sensitive to hormones and herceptin.... only once they have all this info can they develop your treatment plan.
i have BC twice (1 in each boob).... two completely different unrelated cancers... the first one was grade 1 with no nodes and hormone +ve so didnt need chemo just rads and tamoxifen.... the second one was grade 3 with no nodes but hormone and herceptin negative so having chemo and rads.... hope that helps a bit.
hi i am in same boat as you i have been told i had a grade 3 fast growing aand had a mastectomy a week last thursday and when i got told results from my breast cancer nurse they have said i need to have chemo as well as the radiotherepy any body else had this they never told any of this before the op
Really delighted that some of you feel inspired from my experience and will march on with confidence now.
Cheers and best wishes to you all.
Thanks so much for your post,I am struggling a bit finding a new "normal" after my treatment and reading your post has put things a bit more in perspective.
I had almost convinced myself that my BC was a death sentence whereas I actually have a great ( although not guaranteed!) prognosis.
We have to remember many many ladies like you finish treatment and have no more problems from BC and that this forum is slightly misleading as it is used more by those with recurrances and secondaries.Those who remain well have less need of the forum.Sometimes reading the forum makes you feel its a "when" and not "if" you get secondaries.
I am so sorry you lost your husband at such a dreadful time.
Wishing you many more healthy years,
Helen, what a great post. It means soooooo much to hear of such positive outcomes to this damn disease. I'm so sorry you lost your husband, you really had your hands full at a time when you could have well done without it all. So glad you are healthy after all this time, long may it continue. love Pat x
I have posted this for new user 'Helen'
Hi there. I am 69 years old and had grade three diagnosed just before I was 45. I was given the option of mastectomy or lumpectomy and chose lumpectomy. After my first dose of chemo my husband of 25 years died and I was devastated. The cancer and widowhood were each battling for my attention and my two daughters had a lot to cope with.
I have been cancer free since the end of my treatment and had regular checks for about 13 years when I developed heart problems and that needed my attention.
I don't want anyone thinking I am moaning about all my health problems. That is certainly NOT the case.
I simply want all you people who are struggling to live with your diagnosis to be aware that there is ALWAYS hope and never give up.
Cheers and best wishes to all other victims of the big "C"
Just to add to Ostrich's excellent post-chemo is generally given as a drip,every three weeks for as many treatments as your onc recommends.There are many different chemos and your onc will tell you what you are having then you will be able to look on here for someone who has had the same to share experiences.
Grade 3 is how your cancer looks under the microscope - grade 1 being the most like normal cells and slower growing upto grade 3, the most different from normal cells and faster growing.
Just because your tumour is a grade 3 and may grow faster than a grade 1 doesn't mean it will have spread to lymph nodes - I had a grade 1 tumour with 1 lymph node affected.
Grade 3 is different to stage 3. If you have no spread to lymph nodes then you are most likely to be stage 1, although if your cancer is over a certain size (I think 2cm) then it is classified as a stage 2.
In this thread there are various explanations of the grades and stages which is worth reading when you get your pathology reports because there is a stage 2a and 2b and I can't remember the difference.
Although stage is important, (particularly when you are looking at a stage 4 diagnosis), I wouldn't worry too much about it - its more important that you have no lymph node spread.
You will probably be offered chemo due to the fact that your cancer is fast growing (ie grade 3) and rads because they presumably removed the lump leaving breast behind (ie they will zap surrounding tissue to be sure whereas this isn't done generally if you have had a mastectomy as there is no remaining breast tissue to zap).
If you have questions the helpline can help and you should write down all your questions and ask your Oncologist them (no question should be too big or too small).
You will come to terms with the medical terms and be an expert in your cancer soon enough, sadly its a world of medical jargon none of us expected to be proficient in!
also been told grade 3, but no spread to nodes. can't understand
that if the cancer is that agressive, how come no spread to the nodes
as well? they havn't even mentioned the stage yet.
iv also been told to have chemo, rads & hormone treatment but havnt had pathology report yet. find all this really confusing. you just get your head round the diagnosis and then have all the medical terms to try and understand as well. im 42.
is the chem giving drip form or tablets. really dont know what do it, feels like your life is in their hands and you just have to go
with what they are recommending for your own personal diagnosis.
Glad we do some times get good news well done ...
Saw my onc for first time today oh my good what a day this has been the hardest for me yet...
It would be great if you could look at my post that I have just put on as really need some help and advise from people who know what Im going through
post is :PLEASE HELP ? when should I start treatment ....
some of the ladies on this one have repled to me a few times which I am really greatful and as I feel we are now frinds would love their advise on this ( wount type it all out again as you can see cant type very well and looking at time of this post can not sleep either xxxx)
Hi Debs - And everyone. I had 3 nodes removed. I cannot believe what a lucky escape I had. Grade 3 invasive cancer could have done so much damage. I was supposed to go to cuba on a wonderful 14 day 5 star all inclusive holiday when I was dx with cancer. We had to cancel within a week of going but guess what, The holiday means nothing. It took 30 minutes maximum to go for the mammogram & instead of swanning around in Cuba with a monster growing inside me, I was given the chance of a life time, just for the sake of a mammogram. How good is that?
If its possible to pass on good luck from one person to others - well here's mine to all of you. XXXXX
Denise been thinking about you and hoped you had posted tonight, that is really goos news so pleased for you. Now you know where you are going and what is happening. Did you have any lymph nodes removed
during yr lumpectomy? Hope mine is as positive next week! Debs xxx
Just got my results today. Sooooooo good - Had DCIS and IDC grade 3 cancer. It was 24mm with the invasive size being 18mm. Nodes and margins all clear so no more surgery.
Hormone receptors showed ER- Positive and PR-positive. All good. My HER2 status not yet ready but told this was nothing to be concerned about.
I will be starting radio Therapy fairly soon for approx 4/5 weeks and next week I start Arimidex for 5 years to be reviewed in 2 years.
Have a sore boob and underarm but fortunately no swelling.
For anyone who is afraid they may have grade 3 cancer, its doesn't always mean its all bad. It can be treated.
Good luck to anyone waiting. XXXX
Im further down the line than you i was dx grade 3 in oct 07 had lumpectomy and node sampling had to go back to have rest of nodes out then chemo radio, found out i have brca2 so opted for bi-lateral masectomy and recon at same time that was dec 08 then end of feb 09 had full hystrectomy and oopherectomy done, fingers crossed thats the end of it. I just have to go for nipple recon and ports out in may and tamoxifen for 5 years hopefully thats it fingers crossed.
Keep the little b**gers a bay.
Its all very confusing at the beginning but scarily you will be speaking the Breast Cancer language all too quickly.
Although your surgeon can say for sure it would seem that if they got good margins that they got all the cancer in your breast out. The lymph node involvement means that the cancer has travelled to the drainage system under your armpit (where they usually get caught and don't move on out into the body)and the fact that you had a lot of lymph nodes involved will affect your treatment plan.
Hope this helps, x
Sorry to hear you dont have a BCN , I found that out of the five at our local hospital ive really jelled with two which im sure will help on this journey , pls ask at your local hospital Ive heard the money that their putting into this at mo is quite high and I would of hoped that would mean giving us ladies all the support and hlp we deserve ...
Are you in the very early stages of this like me ?
I cant belive how confusing this all is every thing ive ever done in life i wanted to know all the fact pregnancy,child birth ect and in the last two week being thrown into all this I think im going to have to face facts that ill never know all there is to know but to keep busy ill have a good go , just one thing I do know I had good margins in breast area but the lymps involved were very high in number but when or how would I know if they got it all out would that be after my bone and body scan or should I have been told all ready ..... I have asked them to tell me everything and 2 be far anything Ive wanted to know they have quite willingly told me ....but what a stupid thing for me not to ask :have they got it all : maybe I didnt want to ask incase they told me something i didnt want to know ....
Any way ladies the info on here is great thanks
will defo ask next time did they get it all ......... bl.... hope so xxxx
Sure hope they have, Leslee - that's the best news to hear, and also the low lymph figure. Also with the high receptor level, they now have a range of on-going treatments to kick the little b*gger when it's down amd make sure it doesn't rear its ugly head again.
I'm trying not to worry about having a low receptor level - I know there are fewer treatments at present to follow up chemo and rads, and that the risk of early return is higher, but apparently this is compensated by a sharper fall-off of risk after 3-4 years. Everything in this game seems to be swings and roundabouts - to go with the bl*dddy roller-coaster of emotions!
I know what your saying about being a crackerjack surgeon and lousy on communication. I know sometimes they dont want to baffle you with things and sometimes if you dont ask they dont tell. I think my hormone levels are high as ive just had full hystrectomy and oopherectomy as a preventative as i have brca2 and ive still got to have tamoxifen for 5 years. My tumour was 2.5 and i had 2/28 lymphs involved. They did say they got it all but was close to the chest wall.
Hi Leslee - I seem to be getting very little information about of my team. They managed to tell me that it was a 1.2cm Grade 3 tumour, with 1/25 lymph node involvement, then yesterday that it's "not very positive" on the hormone receptors. Short of wrestling the guy to the ground and putting my foot on his throat, I'm not sure I could get any more out of him - I think he must have signed the official secrets act.
But as someone said elsewhere, I'd rather he was a crackerjack surgeon and lousy on the communication, than the other way round. And he got all the little monster in one go, and has left me with a lovely neat little pair of scars that are healing nice and flat, so all credit to him for that.
I hope you dont mind me joining in. Ive been reading this thread with great interest, im grade 3 and have no idea what stage i am, no-one has ever told me. Im also hormone positive but have no idea about how much hormone responsive i am either. I will be asking on my next appointment. Did you ladies have to ask or was you told from the start? I dont even have a BCN.
Being hormone positive is a good thing because it gives you more treatment options. I might be wrong here but I think being 8 out of 8 is also a good thing as I think my onc said to me that the higher the number nearer 8 the more the cells behave in a way that is expected of them so the more nearer 8 the more receptive the tumour is to hormone treatments. Mine was 6 out of 8.
Good luck with everything, I promise it does get easier once you have your treatment plan and you know what your up against.
Best of luck
Thanks so much you have been great help dito with children why stop enjoying them just because of this , is the hormone pos thing a good thing then sorry not sure .... Lisa
I am glad you have your results through now Lisa - that is one big hurdle out of the way. Good news on the oestrogen rating. Once you get your full treatment plan you will know where you are heading.
But up at 3 in the morning?!This bloody disease makes us all insomniacs.
I have a very young son and while it is incredibly hard to balance all the treatments with looking after a toddler, he does provide me with a focus beyond all the cancer stuff - and kids don't stop being kids just because cancer's shown up. He's my reason to keep getting out of bed each day and yours will keep you going too.
Good luck with it all.
Thanks ladies cant belive I started that tread its tuck me ages to read it all .....Had results today and just wish I copied the list down off here and said which one am I , I think from what I have read today ( wished Id of taped it , so emotional forgot most of it when left room )
I think im a 3
They said it was 2.5 with good margins in breat but 15 out of the 16 lymp gland were pos also i was the highest hormone pos you could be ,think she said 8 out of 8 ????
They have said they are going to throw everything at me and because Im only 2 weeks into this whole mess Ive said ok , will see chemo doc next week I think so surpose his the one to ask stage thing ....
and because Im young with 2 great kids Ill have every thing they want to give me because not going to let this thing bet me .........
I think anything that helps you relax is good - reiki, acupuncture etc. Homeopathy is really only any good as a placebo, and for that you have to be able to make yourself beleive that plain water can have a "memory" of having once been exposed to a bit of duck's liver, since diluted 1000 times (but hopefully has "forgotten" all the people that have p**ed it through their system over the years!)
And good nutrition is really important - lots of veggies and fruit. I've asked friends not to bring me sweeties (for some reason they laughed at that!) as I know I wouldn't be able to resist them, and then I wouldn't have any appetite left for proper food. Though a nice little cake with my coffee now and then is good! And walking - apparently that has been shown to be the best exercise for reducing risk of recurrence. Anyone wanna hire a dog?
Thanks Suzanne for good link to article on alternative treatments.
As for apricot seeds (laetrile) well this link is pretty good I think:
http://www.cancerhelp.org.uk/help/defau ... page=21859
Hi, I had 1.7cm grade2 invasive and 2cm grade3 DCIS and was told that they only count the invasive when staging as DCIS is stage 0 and contained in the ducts.I also had 1 node involved and was told I was stage 2A.
best wishes Mell xx
My tumour was partly DCIS and partly IDC and the size I was given incorporated the whole thing, not just the invasive bit. Probably yet another situation where things vary depending on where you are. The size of the whole thing makes my cancer a stage 2, but if only the invasive bit is taken it would have been a stage 1.
Do you mind if I come into this thread?. I have found the whole staging thing hard to understand and these comments have really helped. Thanks Katharine M for your succinct list. My tumour was 1.8cm but DCIS to the margins making total size 5cm. Does that mean that when looking at stages I go by tumour size as 1.8 or 5cm? I had nodal involvement too so my stage varies greatly depending on which measurement I take.
Hope you don't mind me asking.