Risk of Breast Cancer Recurrence in Black Women

HR+/HER2- breast cancer is the most common type of invasive breast cancer among women. The majority of diagnoses for this specific type of breast cancer occur in the early stages.  Adjuvant endocrine therapy is recommended to reduce the risk of unfavorable breast cancer outcomes such as disease recurrence and death. While adjuvant endocrine therapy has proven to be effective as an essential part of treatment in HR+/HER2- breast cancers, many women will still experience recurrence.
What is breast cancer recurrence?
Breast cancer recurrence occurs when the cancer returns after it was previously treated or undetected. There are 3 main types of breast cancer recurrence. Local recurrence occurs when the cancer comes back in the same breast. Regional recurrence occurs when the cancer comes back in the lymph nodes near the breast. Distant recurrence occurs when the cancer comes back somewhere else in your body. Of all the breast cancer subtypes, female patients with HR+/HER2- breast cancer experience the highest 5-year survival rates at 94.8%. Additional research is needed to fully understand the risk of recurrence in patients with HR+/HER2- breast cancer.
If you have been treated for breast cancer, the thought of cancer recurring can be stressful. Early detection and intervention may improve outcomes in patients who experience recurrence. It is important to maintain routine follow up visits as recommended by your healthcare provider to closely monitor.
Risk of Recurrence in Black Women
Minority women with HR+/HER2- breast cancer, including women of Black, Hispanic, and American Indian descent, experience significantly increased risks of breast cancer recurrence when compared to white women. While HR+/HER2- breast cancer has a more favorable prognosis than other types of breast cancer, it represents the greatest disparities in survival. Other risk factors that have been found to contribute to the risk of recurrence include larger sized tumors and involvement of lymph nodes.
If you or a loved one have early-stage ER+/HER2- breast cancer and have had surgery to treat it, you may be eligible for a clinical trial. Click here to learn more about an ongoing breast cancer clinical trial, determine if you are eligible, and do your part to increase diversity in clinical trials and advance estrogen receptor positive (ER+) and human epidermal receptor 2 negative (HER2-) breast cancer research.
 
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This article is sponsored by Lilly.

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