Symptoms of Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC)
Please Note that IBC is very aggressive and these symptoms could occur very quickly. If you notice any of these changes, see your health care provider immediately!
Survival rates of IBC
Breast cancer prognosis has steadily improved over the years, IBC prognosis have not. It’s not uncommon for the cancer to return after treatment. In long term, probably no more than a fourth to a third of IBC patients are long-term survivors. Let me reintegrate that the survival rate for someone with IBC is quiet lower than that of a typical breast cancer patient.
According to data from the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database, for women who were diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer between 1999 and 2008, the five-year relative survival rate was about 41.1% for white women and 20.7% for black women.. This compares with about 87% for all breast cancers combined.
With EARLY treatment, up to 50 percent of those with IBC will live for five years after diagnosis and about 35 percent will be cancer-free 10 years after diagnosis. It is important to note these survival data are based on women treated five to 10 years ago. With current treatments, survival rates may be higher.
The key to survival is early and accurate diagnosis. Early dignosis and treatments improves long term survival. Sad thing is, whereas breast cancer prognosis has steadily improved over the years, IBC has not.
Now, you may be asking yourself is Inflammatory breast cancer automatically a death sentence? Absolutely not, there's always hope and advancement in the treatment of IBC. There is still no known cure for Inflammatory breast cancer or what causes it.
Breast self-examination must move far beyond merely looking for lumps, look for changes. It doesn't cost a thing to stand in front of the mirror and check your breast for anything that's unusual, or different or strange or abnormal. We must recondition our mind and remember that we don't have to have a lump to have breast cancer.
IBC is visible, it hurts, know the signs, the easiest thing to remember is, (If there are any changes to your breast, get it checked out immediately). No one knows your breast better than you. While we are focusing on the breast that's red or swollen or aching, we must never forget about the other breast because the diagnosis of IBC involves multiple things.
Knowledge, education, and awareness saves lives and you do not have to be a health professional to save a life. It is imperative that we know the signs, and it is unacceptable that women know nothing about IBC. Be aware; when in doubt, rule it out. Empower yourself with information and help spread the word, that there is a breast cancer that is aggressive and lethal if not caught early enough.