Physician may do/request:
- History & Physical Exam
- Needle Aspiration or Surgical Biopsy
- Taking and testing tissue samples for anaylsis for cancer cells
The only way to confirm cancer is for a doctor to do a needle aspiration or surgical biopsy to collect and test tissue for cancer cells.
- Cycles of treatment will depend on the medicines that are used and how the medicines are given. Chemotherapy medication may be given in combination with each other. Some of the most commonly used medicines are:
Used to halt or slow down the growth of hormone-sensitive cancer cells.
- Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs), such as raloxifene (Evista), tamoxifen (Nolvadex), and toremifene (Fareston).
- Antiestrogen medicine, such as fulvestrant (Faslodex).
- Aromatase inhibitors, such as anastrozole (Arimidex), exemestane (Aromasin), and letrozole (Femara).
- LH-RH agonists, such as goserelin (Zoladex) and leuprolide (Lupron).
Uses medications that only affect cancer cells and not the normal cells.
- Monoclonal antibodies such as Trastuzumab (Herceptin) and Pertuzumab (Perjeta) are used to treat HER-2 positive breast cancer
- Tyrosine kinase inhibitors such as Lapatinib, may be used to treat women who have HER-2+ cancer that has progressed even after they have taken trastuzumab
- PARP inhibitor therapy for triple-negative breast cancer (cancer cells that do not have estrogen or progesterone receptors or large amounts of HER-2).