Cancer is an insidious disease that is capable of exponential growth and quickly spreading from one part of the body to other areas.
A prime example is metastatic (or stage 4) breast cancer, which often extends into the liver, brain, bones, or lungs. This occurs when cancer cells break away from the original tumor and travel through the bloodstream or lymphatic system. In fact, it is estimated that up to 30 percent of women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer later come down with the metastatic disease. And there are many cases where cancer in the breast has already metastasized elsewhere in the body because it wasn’t detected early enough.
This is why it is important to know the common symptoms of metastatic breast cancer, which can vary depending on where the cancer has spread to. These symptoms include:
- Chest pain
- Constant back, bone, or joint pain
- Difficulty urinating, which may indicate that nerves in your back are pinched by a cancer
- Numbness or weakness anywhere in your body
- A constant dry cough
- Shortness of breath
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal bloating, pain, or tenderness
- Constant nausea, vomiting, or weight loss
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and whites of your eyes)
- Severe headaches
- Blurred vision or loss of eyesight
- Loss of balance
Of course, many of these symptoms are associated with any number of other diseases. Nevertheless, if you experience one or more of them, you should immediately consult your doctor who may recommend diagnostic tests, such as bloodwork, a whole-body bone scan, MRI, X-ray, CT or PET scan to confirm or rule out breast cancer.
As traumatic as being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer can be, it is not a hopeless situation. Many patients have been known to live long, productive lives despite it since there are a wide variety of treatment options and new medical therapies being announced regularly.
At the very least, treatment may help control metastatic breast cancer for an extended period. If you stop responding to one treatment, there’s often another that may help improve your condition or drive the cancer into remission.
One of the most effective, painless treatments for breast cancer is the CyberKnife® System. It’s a noninvasive radiation treatment that, despite its name, does not involve surgery. Instead, missile-guided radiation technology zeroes in on tumors with pinpoint accuracy so it can deliver radiation directly to the tumor, while leaving healthy surrounding tissue unscathed.
This ability to isolate its radiation enables CyberKnife to treat many tumors that might otherwise be inoperable and untreated with other radio-surgery systems. Also referred to as “The Beam of Life,” CyberKnife effectively treats primary cancers, recurring cancers, benign tumors and metastatic cancers.
Best of all, CyberKnife therapy is completed in one to five,
30-to-90-minutes sessions, compared to the dozens of exhausting sessions over a period of weeks or months required with conventional radiation treatments. Plus, during your treatment at the CyberKnife Center of Miami, your sessions are overseen by the most highly trained radiation oncologists, surgeons, medical physicists and radiation therapists.
To date, hundreds of thousands of patients have received CyberKnife treatments worlwide. If you have been diagnosed with cancer, our dedicated staff would welcome the opportunity to discuss your treatment options and help you on your journey to recovery. To learn more about how we can help restore your health, call us today at (800) 204-0455 or (305) 279-2900, or today to request an appointment and visit our website www.cyberknifemiami.com