This is one of the facts that surprised me the most when I started getting into the nitty-gritty details of breast cancer after my own diagnosis. Understanding that there are so many different variables that make up the umbrella of the term “breast cancer,” has helped me understand better why a cure hasn’t been found yet. If it was one disease and homogenous (the same), figuring out how cancer works would be much less complex.
One of the first things I advise newly diagnosed people is to understand their subtype and why it is different from others. While about 30% of us have a chance of mutation of the cancer in our bodies, most of us can get to know our subtype and know that’s the one we need to watch out for. Treatment, how and when, and dealing with side effects is different for different subtypes; it behooves us to know what we can expect.
Bottom line, get to know the cancer that is in your body and understand that we each have unique experiences that aren’t transferrable. Ask lots and lots of questions.