Saturday, June 25, 2016

Will It Come Back?

Will it come back? We ponder that question. We obsess over that question. We analyze it to death. We dissect that question. We dream about that question. We have nightmares about that question. And no one can tell us anything.

Once you get cancer, you never know if it will come back. Or when. That's what really sucks about cancer.

I did read an article summary recently that discusses some indicators of when breast cancer might recur. A study was done to see if it could be determined which factors contributed to when breast cancer might come back. Some factors were determined to have impact and others not.

A high grade tumor (meaning how aggressive it is on a scale of 1-3) is more likely to recur sooner as opposed to later. A hormone receptor sensitive tumor is more likely to recur later than an ER/PR- one. Smaller tumors were more likely to recur later than bigger ones. All of that sounds fairly logical.

But what doesn't sound logical is that lymph node involvement, patient age, and menopausal status did not appear to correlate to when recurred. We do need to remember we are talking about 'when' it recurred as opposed to 'if' it recurred.

I would have thought that the more nodes involved the sooner the recurrence. I had one tiny little lymph node in the cancer party so this does not help me at all. But otherwise, my tumor was grade 2, ER/PR+, and relatively small at 1.7 cm. So all this adds up to say that my cancer if it recurs is more likely to recur later. And since I am now 9 years out (where all that time went, I have no idea), its all a crap shoot anyway.  I hate cancer. I need to find something cheerier to do....

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