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  • Nathira Salim

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I am one of those studious people - who will research on line, read books as thick as encyclopaedias, write notes about definitions about technical lingos for anything new that is related to me.


So one of the first things I did the moment I was told that I have cancer was to read up and find out in detail what was inside of me. The emotions and drama moments - will be posted some other time. Its important to know what is inside of me. It was and still is important to know what type of cancer I have, its stage, grade, type, and its prognosis so I will not be caught surprised. It is my cancer - I am now living with it. I may have lived with it for a couple of years before it showed its head up, but now since I am aware of its existence, I should know more about it and make plans for it.


So for the newbies here are the type of breast cancer you will see more about in my post. You can google for these types as well. Here are the summary of it - that I read and noted about.


UDH - usual ductal hyperplasia

This is not cancer per se. Its formed as part of aging. This happens when cells from a second layer in an orderly manner in a duct in a breast.


ADH - Atypical ductal hyperplasia

When the above mentioned UDH cells become disorganised, and creates multiple layers and change shape, they are called atypical. This needs to be removed when identified. This was what they though I had in my right breast. If enough atypical cells grow upon the ducts empty space so much that it expands past 2mm, or if 2 nearby ducts contain ADH, its labelled as breast cancer.


DCIS - Ductal Carcinoma in situ

When ADH evolves into the earliest form of breast cancer. The atypical cells have not spread outside of the ducts into the surrounding tissue. So what it means is that its still in the milk duct and its not spread outside. Easily treatable and can be removed by surgery followed by radiation. Chemo is not recommended for this stage as of yet, Usually Stage 0-1.


IDC - Invasive ductal carcinoma

This is when volume of cells greater than 1mm breaks the duct wall. Invasive simply refers to cells once inside an intact duct now bring immediately on the other side of that duct wall. These have the potential to enter the lymphatics or bloodstream and travel to other organs. This is what I have on my left breast.


For a more exhaustive details and explanations - please click on the link here.


I suggest all newbies to read up on the following book by Dr Kristi Funk -"Breasts - An Owner's Manual". It really was a guide to whatever I was going through. The above short summary was from her book. It was very detailed and gave me proper insights to the cancer I have. You can also check out her website here.


And no - no one is sponsoring poor me.








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