By Dr. Kathleen Ruddy

Double CallEighty percent of women who developed cancer have no family history of this condition. Most cancer has developed due to hereditary and environmental factors. Nevertheless, United States has 2.5 million cancer survivors that are living under treatment of chemotherapy or radiation. Inflammatory breast cancer survivors have managed to take a position in the said survivors.

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Survivors in America

Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare condition but often, when it shows symptoms, the diagnosis will reveal that it is already in stage three. According to the American Society, inflammatory breast cancer is responsible for only one to five percent of all invasive cancers but the surviving rate is lower. Only 40 percent have the chance to survive this condition compared to other types of breast cancer, which has 90 percent.

African-American Inflammatory Breast Cancer Survivors

Inflammatory breast cancer to African-American women is considered as a silent killer. Ten percent of this breast carcinoma in United States is endured by this race but they have smaller chance of survival compared to whites. The reason behind it is that 20.5 percent of African-American women refuse chemotherapy and 26.3 percent of them say no to radiation.


To increase the chances of survival, early detection is the key. Though it frequently occurs due to old age, women at young age can also be affected with this condition. Often than not, these young women, when diagnosed, have an aggressive type of inflammatory breast cancer. To lower the risk, there are few things that a woman can do. There are reported cases that breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast cancer. This means that breastfeeding is not only healthy for the baby but for the mother as well. Another breast health tip is to have an ultrasound and annual medical examinations. Check ups will keep you updated on what is happening in your body.

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Foundation

The median age of patients suffering from inflammatory breast cancer ranges from 45 to 55 years old, although some cases reveal that it also occur at younger ages. The average five-year survival rate for patients affected by this carcinoma is only 40 percent. The low rate is due to late diagnosis, resistance to treatment, and deficient expertise in treating it.

Cancer Network

The Cancer Network believes that inflammatory breast cancer is a fatal disease. It had a five-year actuarial overall survival of less than five percent. However, due to continuous research, surgery, chemotherapy, and education, the rate has improved to 20 percent to 30 percent for a 15-year survival rate.

American Association for Cancer Research

A professor in the University of Texas stated that upon diagnosis of inflammatory breast cancer, only 40 percent have a chance to reach the five-year survival rate. This result implied that this condition needs a thorough understanding to understand the molecular basis of the condition.

Death from breast cancer can be lowered if it is detected early. If it is diagnosed before it becomes worse, the survival rate will be as high as 95 percent. Additionally,  mammograms and ultrasounds can help detect if cancer cells have invaded other breast tissue. Breast cancer is not only a woman’s disease, as it definitely affects men as well. Women and men should be aware of the symptoms and risks.


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