Stage IV breast cancer is the most severe condition of breast cancer because it is the last stage. Even though healing stage 4 breast cancer medically is difficult to do, there are some treatments that can be performed to extend the patients’ life expectancy and relieve the symptoms or effects. For example, by reducing the size of cancer or slowing down the growth of cancer cells. Those medications can be given to make the patients live longer with good life quality. Below are some treatments that can be given to patients with stage 4 breast cancer.
Chemotherapy becomes the main treatment for patients with stage 4 breast cancer. Chemotherapy can be given in the form of liquid, pills, and infusion. The medication is not only given to cancer cells in the main location but also cancer cells which are already spread to other body parts. Unfortunately, chemotherapy can also affect healthy cells in the body. In addition, this treatment can also bring heavy side effects. At a further stage, chemotherapy is probably given along with hormone therapy.
Hormone therapy can be given to women whose cancer development is affected by hormones. In other words, this therapy is given to patients with a positive hormone receptor. The medicines included in this hormone therapy are letrozole, tamoxifen, exemestane, and anastrozole. Besides medicine, the doctor will offer another option for womb removal to women who have not entered menopause yet. Womb removal is purposed to reduce the level of estrogen. So, it will decrease the spreading speed of cancer cells which are developed because of hormones.
The next treatment for stage IV breast cancer is radiation therapy. This treatment is performed in order to destroy or at least slow the growth of cancer cells down by giving Rontgen radiation. This radiation therapy is the right treatment if the spread of cancer cells is certainly known. Besides being able to be irradiated in the developing cancer area, radiation can also be inserted through a needle or a tube near the tumor location.
Surgery can be performed depends on the shape and in which part cancer has spread. Moreover, in some cases, surgery might be needed to remove ovarium to reduce the level of estrogen hormone.
Medications for cancer will be better if they are performed earlier to decrease the effects, just like the effects of lung cancer. Those are the treatment for stage IV breast cancer.