Ask the Experts: Metastatic Breast Cancer Risks and Causes

In this video, Darria Long Gillespie, MD, explains how following a treatment plan and a healthy lifestyle can reduce the risk of breast cancer returning after treatment and spreading to other parts of the body.

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Transcript

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Breast cancer detected beyond the breasts or local lymph nodes is referred to as metastatic breast cancer, or Stage IV.
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The majority of people diagnosed with breast cancer will not have metastases when they are first diagnosed, although a small percentage will have metastases found
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on that initial diagnosis. However, breast cancer can also return after treatment, either locally or by spreading
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to distant organs, particularly in the first five years. The common sites of spread are bone, blood, brain, and liver.
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If you are a breast cancer survivor, you have already reduced your risk of recurrence by following your initial cancer treatment program.
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You may be able to reduce your risk of recurrence by leading a healthy lifestyle, including healthy eating and maintaining a healthy weight, exercise,
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limiting alcohol, and quitting smoking. Although there is no cure for metastatic cancer, remember that you are not alone and that there

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