Updated: Jan 4
If you've been told you have stage 0 breast cancer, it may be hard to know what to do next. You're not alone. Stage 0 breast cancer is the most common diagnosis and most women are referred to surgery without undergoing any additional treatment. The cause of the cancer isn't always known at this stage meaning other treatments that depend on the identification of the cause are also not required at this stage.
As Triwi we don't want you to feel alone. Whether you are suspecting of breast cancer or just want to get the information we have your back. Let us teach you what stage 0 breast cancer means.
What is stage 0 breast cancer?
Stage 0 breast cancer, also known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), is a non-invasive type of breast cancer. It means that the cancer cells are present in the lining of the breast milk ducts, but have not spread beyond the ducts into the surrounding breast tissue.
Stage 0 breast cancer is not considered life-threatening, but it can increase the risk of developing invasive breast cancer in the future if left untreated. Early detection and treatment of stage 0 breast cancer can help prevent cancer from progressing to a more advanced stage.
Is stage 0 breast cancer serious?
Stage 0 breast cancer is often a very treatable form of the disease, but it's important to know that not all stage 0 breast cancers are the same.
In general, stage 0 breast cancer is defined as cancer that has not spread beyond the ducts or lobules of the breast tissue. Stage 0 breast cancer can be further divided into two main groups:
-Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which occurs when there's a malignant tumor inside one or more milk ducts that hasn't yet broken through the wall of those ducts
- Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS), which occurs when there's a malignant tumor inside one or more lobules that hasn't yet broken through the wall of those lobules
Is Stage 0 considered cancer?
Stage 0 cancer is not considered to be cancer in the traditional sense because the cells have not yet invaded surrounding tissue and do not pose a threat to the body. However, it is considered a pre-cancerous condition because it carries a higher risk of developing into cancer if left untreated. It is important to address Stage 0 cancer early to prevent it from progressing to a more advanced stage.
Symptoms of stage 0 breast cancer
"Do I have breast cancer?"
That is the question every woman asks -- or should ask -- at least once in her life after an abnormal test result. No one enjoys thinking about it, but it's an important question to answer. You should know the signs and symptoms of stage 0 breast cancer because you are the first line of defense when it comes to detecting the disease.
1. A lump or mass felt in the breast
A lump or mass felt in the breast can be a symptom of Stage 0 breast cancer, also known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). It is important to note that not all breast lumps or masses are cancerous, and many can be benign (non-cancerous) conditions such as fibroadenomas or cysts.
2. Pain or discomfort in the breast
Pain or discomfort in the breast is not typically a symptom of stage 0 cancer, which is also known as noninvasive breast cancer or carcinoma in situ. While it is important to be aware of any changes or abnormalities in the breasts, such as pain or discomfort, these symptoms are more commonly associated with other benign conditions such as breast cysts or fibrocystic breast changes.
3. Change in the size or shape of the breast
A change in the size or shape of the breast is not typically a symptom of stage 0 cancer. While changes in the size or shape of the breast can sometimes be a sign of breast cancer, these symptoms are more commonly associated with other benign conditions such as hormonal changes or the natural aging process.
4. A feeling of fullness in the armpit
A feeling of fullness in the armpit is a symptom of stage 0 breast cancer. It's common for people with breast cancer to feel that their armpit is swollen or that there's something in it. This feeling can be mild, moderate, or severe.