Receiving a cancer diagnosis can be a highly stressful time for many young women, particularly when there is pressure to begin treatment as soon as possible. Choosing the right treatment path can often be a minefield, but at Icon we are here to support you in navigating all of the available treatment options and deciding on the best treatment for you and your cancer.
Supporting you to understand your treatment options
A breast cancer diagnosis can be very confronting for young women. Breast cancers diagnosed in women under 40 years of age are commonly more aggressive types of cancer, such as triple negative breast cancer and HER2 positive breast cancer. However, research has shown that with timely care and appropriate systemic treatment young women can benefit from improved health outcomes.
For more information on these cancers and their treatment, we encourage you to read the articles below.
For some young women, a breast cancer diagnosis may come with a frightening term – advanced breast cancer (also known as denovo metastatic breast cancer). This is where previously undiagnosed breast cancer has spread to other areas of the body, such as the bones, lungs or liver. Research has found that younger women with denovo metastatic breast cancer tend to do better than their older counterparts, and this may be due to their better tolerance to different lines of treatment. While advanced breast cancer may not be curable, it is highly treatable, particularly in young women who tend to respond well to many different lines of treatment including novel therapies.
Pregnancy associated breast cancer (PABC) refers to breast cancer diagnosed during pregnancy, lactation, or postpartum years. There is evidence that breast cancer diagnosed during pregnancy is different from that diagnosed postpartum when it comes to prognosis and the biology of the cancer. Although this is a fairly rare type of breast cancer, currently there is an increasing trend in PABC.
The Icon Young Women’s Cancer Program is designed to help young women navigate their treatment depending on a patient’s individual concerns.