Breast cancer can be accompanied by many symptoms, while some of them are bearable there are a significant amount of symptoms that can affect self-esteem and life quality. Fungating breast cancer is one of them because it is a type of ulcer it can cause disfigurement and a foul smell.
So is there a treatment for it? At what stage of cancer do these ulcers form? We are here to answer every question you have in mind. Continue reading to find out.
What is fungating breast cancer (ulcer cancer)?
Breast cancer could bring different types of infections on the tissue, and fungating breast cancer is one of them. Fungating breast cancer is a rare yet advanced type of cancer that is only seen in 2-5% percent of breast cancers.
This disease forms an ulcerating tumor on the skin of the breast. Cancer cells in the breast grow and invade surrounding tissue. Ductal carcinoma is the most common type of breast cancer yet also it is the most common in terms of developing an ulcerating tumor. This type of tumor causes the skin to break down and creates a foul smell. They are also painful and can cause disfigurement of the breast.
What are the causes of fungating breast cancer?
Like most types of breast cancer, the exact cause of fungating breast cancer. But by knowing the risk factors you can do lifestyle changes to avoid breast cancer and have the awareness to get an early diagnosis If you are suspecting of breast cancer.
These risk factors are:
Genetics (Inheriting BRCA1, BRCA2 genes)
What are the symptoms of fungating breast cancer?
Fungating breast cancer is hard to miss. While most of its signs are clearly visible it is accompanied by symptoms such as fatigue, weight loss, and anemia.
1. Pain in the breast
Since fungating breast cancer causes a leaking scar, it can cause pain in the ulcer area.
2. Leaking from the breast cancer wound
Leaking is also known as discharge from the scarred area. This leaking can be easily identifiable since it isn’t a white or clear liquid but a cloudy one often times with yellowish color. This leaking can come from the breast itself but often times it can come out from the nipple.
Itchiness or pruritus can be a symptom of fungating breast cancer. The ulcer caused by this disease causes itchiness differently than skin rash or eczema. Itching the scar is not advised since it can make it worse.
4. Warm skin
Warm skin is an advanced symptom of fungating breast cancer, it is accompanied by redness and itching.
5. Bad odor
The leakage that comes out from the scarred area of fungating breast cancer can have a foul odor. Often times this symptom affects self-esteem because it makes people feel like they are not clean.
It is advised for you get the help of a psychologist alongside your regular doctor. As we all know breast cancer is a hard journey that can affect mental health.
Can fungating breast cancer be cured?
Unfortunately, fungating breast cancer is not curable at this moment but there are ways to increase the comfort and ease the daily lives of a patient.
What are the treatment options for fungating breast cancer?
Since it isn’t curable the goal becomes the treatment of this advanced breast cancer is to slow the growth and spread of the tumor. This is usually done via surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.
The point of the surgery is to remove the main tumor and any affected lymph nodes. Radiation therapy and chemotherapy are used to try to shrink the tumor and slow its growth.