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    Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day is a FREE, annual event that brings leading breast reconstruction experts and women who have been through it together to answer all your questions.


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  • About Our Merger

    On February 1, 2017, the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) and the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF) joined forces.


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    Our team has the latest information about breast cancer and can answer questions about a diagnosis, treatments, what to expect, financial resources, coping, local support groups and more.


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    Whether you are living with metastatic breast cancer or have a loved one who is, it can be helpful to talk with someone who understands what you are going through. We are available to you.


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    Canadian Cancer Statistics 2017 was released on June 20. This annual publication gives detailed statistics for the most common types of cancer.


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Diagnosing Metastatic Breast Cancer

Metastases are diagnosed using a number of different tests, including blood tests and imaging tests such as a computed tomographyComputed Tomography (CT) scan:
An imaging technique that takes a series of x-rays from many different angles and combines them to create a detailed 3-dimensional image of the bones and tissues in your body, such as the breast.
(CT) scan, ultrasoundUltrasound:
An imaging technique that uses sound waves to take a picture of structures in the body, such as the breast.
, bone scanBone scan:
A test that uses small amounts of radioactive material to create images of the bones. It is an important tool for detecting cancer that has spread (metastasized) to the bone.
, and/or x-ray.

While the characteristics of the metastatic tumour are likely to be the same as the primary cancer in the breast, this is not always the case. For this reason, your doctor may do a confirming biopsyBiopsy:
A procedure in which tissue samples are removed from the body for examination under a microscope to determine if cancer or other abnormal cells are present.
to take a sample of cells from the site of metastasis. The sample will be sent to a laboratory to be examined by a pathologistPathologist:
A doctor who specializes in the diagnosis of disease by examining cells, body fluids and tissue.
, who will determine the hormone and HER-2 receptor status of the metastatic cancer cells. This information is key for your health care team to be able to prescribe the most effective treatment to manage the cancer.



Sources:

Canadian Cancer Society. Metastatic Cancer Overview. Accessed February 7, 2014.

Living Beyond Breast Cancer & Metastatic Breast Cancer Network. Guide for the Newly Diagnosed: Empowering you to make informed decisions and to cope with your emotions after a diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer. Accessed February 7, 2014.

National Cancer Institute. Metastatic Cancer. Accessed February 6, 2014.