Radiation therapy is often recommended for women with metaplastic breast cancer. Radiation is used to kill any cancer cells remaining in the area where your tumor was found. The treatment is considered local and is targeted specifically at the tumor cavity. There are a number of different methods for delivering radiation therapy but the most common offered to MpBC patients is “Whole Breast Irraditaion.” Radiation is most often given five days a week for five to seven weeks. Radiation for women with metaplastic breast cancer is the same as radiation offered to women with more common types of breast cancer.
The efficacy of radiation therapy for metaplastic breast cancer has also been challenged. However, at least one study seems to provide evidence that radiation therapy (RT) offers a real benefit to women with MpBC. Radiation thearpy is the standard of care for most invasive cancers so it will most likely be offered to women with MpBC. Read the study here.
Many women find radiation therapy much easier to endure than chemo. The primary side effect is skin burn at the site of the therapy and fatigue. Many creams and lotions are available to minimize the skin damage. Fatigue often accumulates and only becomes apparent at the end of the treatment regime.