Cancer Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal

Third recurrence of Apocrine cancer

My first episode was Feb,. 1992--had modified radical mastectomy with lymph node removal w/ 3 malignant nodes/left breast.
Had chemotherapy (CMF) 8 treatments 3 weeks apart.  Did fine with treatment and was cancer free till May 1999 when lump in scar line of mastectomy proved malignant.  Had chemo (adriamycin, cytoxin, taxol) followed by radiation.  Could not tolerate taxol so only had one treatment of that.  Now since 2006 have had numbness in right arm with neck pain.  Was diagnosed years ago with degenerative bone disease in neck area due to arthritis.  Had chiropractic treatments (x-ray showed pinched nerve).  Medical doctor got involved and also  did xrays and found pinched nerve with degenerative bone disease.  Ordered physical therapy after doing stress test to make sure it wasn't my heart because of numbness in right arm.  PT helped but did not go away.  Went to orthopedic doctor who referrred by to spine doctor.  
Meantime I had regular 6 mo check up with my oncologist who ordered bone scan which showed area at C-6 abnormal and not consistent with arthritis in spine, hips, knees, ankles.  Ordered an MRI of spine which also was not normal and then a bone biopsy which revealed apocrine cancer in C-6.  Am in process of having CT scans of lungs, liver and pelvis.
In 1992 there were very few cases of apocrine cancer according to all my doctors and research that I tried to do.  I guess my question is:  Has apocrine cancer become more common and what is the course of treatment now?  Mine seems to recur irregularly and not frequently (thank God).  I seem to be seeing a pattern here of recurrence.  Can I expect more of the same?
1 Responses
322973 tn?1239908038
Apocrine histology is rarely seen in breast cancer. It is a rare subtype of invasive ductal carcinoma (see Reference 1). It probably has a similar prognosis and clinical outcome as other types of breast cancer (see Reference 1), although some reports (see Reference 2) show significantly improved survival breast cancer patients with apocrine histology. There is limited data to determine if apocrine cancers should be treated differently from commoner types of breast cancer. Hence the investigation, treatment, follow-up, and treatment of recurrences is usually along general lines of invasive ductal cancers of the breast.
There is no robust data to prove if this subtype is getting commoner.

Reference 1: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/119413850/abstract
Reference 2: http://surgpathcriteria.stanford.edu/breast/apocrinecabr/printable.html
Popular Resources
Here are 15 ways to help prevent lung cancer.
New cervical cancer screening guidelines change when and how women should be tested for the disease.
They got it all wrong: Why the PSA test is imperative for saving lives from prostate cancer
Everything you wanted to know about colonoscopy but were afraid to ask
A quick primer on the different ways breast cancer can be treated.
Get the facts about this disease that affects more than 240,000 men each year.