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Advanced breast cancer care is 'Cinderella' to early diagnosis

Women with advanced breast cancer are still not getting the care they need, writes Victoria Harmer.

A diagnosis of advanced breast cancer (ABC) essentially means the person will not be cured from the disease. The term usually refers to breast cancer that has spread outside the breast and metastasised.

Metastases occurs due to the cell detaching itself from the original tumour, travelling in the bloodstream and being deposited in another part of the body. Breast cancer usually metastasises to the bones, lungs, liver and brain. Some people are diagnosed with ABC on presentation of their initial breast cancer, although it is more usual for people to present with ABC sometime after their initial treatment.

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