New York women who are concerned about receiving a diagnosis of breast cancer may be overwhelmed about the amount of information they will receive. However, understanding the diagnosis and treatment processes can help.
There is more than one type of breast cancer, and identifying certain factors about is essential to determining what type of treatment a woman should receive. A patient will undergo multiple tests that will reveal the tumor’s size and if the cancer has spread to any other part of her body. The results of these tests will determine which stage the cancer will be given. Additional tests will focus directly on the cancerous cells. Tumor cells are examined microscopically to detect hormone receptors, or HR, and the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2, or HER2. With this information, a physician will be able to understand the development of the cancer cells and what steps to take to eliminate them.
Cancer cells with HR indicate that the patient has an HR+ cancer. If there are little or no hormone receptors present, the cancer is designated as HR-. Cancer cells with an abundance of HER2 receptors indicate that an HER2+ cancer is present. A patient’s cancer will be referred to as HER2- if her cancer cells have little or no HER2 receptors. The type of breast cancer that is found in patients the most frequently is HR+/HER2-. Almost 70 percent of all breast cancer is classified as HR+/HER2-.
The failure to diagnose cancer may be a form of medical malpractice. An attorney may evaluate the factors of a client’s case and obtain the opinions of one or more medical experts in order to determine if the failure constituted negligence.