Breast CancerBreast Cancer A to Z
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Breast Cancer Glossary




Fat Necrosis
A benign breast change where a firm, irregular mass forms as a result of trauma to the fatty tissue. It may appear years after the insult. The injury causes the fat in the breast to become inflamed and form round, firm lumps which may or may not be painful. The skin around them may appear red or bruised.
Also see -> Benign Breast Lumps.

Feeling of extreme tiredness, weariness, or exhaustion. This is found in metastatic breast cancer patients in connection with treatments or undiagnosed cancer progression. Anemia from metastases to the bone marrow and other causes, tissue repair following radiation treatment, bone marrow depression associated with chemotherapy treatment, inadequate nutrition, depression and anxiety are some of the more common causes.

Benign masses seen in mammograms most common in women in their 20's and 30's. These occur more frequently in African American women. They are firm, rubbery, movable and often rounded. Also see -> Does Race Matter in Breast Cancer?

Fibrocystic Changes
A term referring to a common non-specific condition of the breast. The condition usually is not cancer, but a benign change in the breast tissue due to cyclical hormones. These lumps or cysts are fluid filled sacs that often enlarge and become tender just before the menstrual period. Cystic changes are most prominent in women age 35 to 50 years old. Both breasts are usually involved and multiple cysts of many sizes are common. Also see -> Benign Breast Lumps.

Final Diagnosis
A final determination reached from evaluating signs, symptoms and laboratory findings. Treatments are based on these findings.

Fine Needle Biopsy/Cyst Aspiration
Removal and evaluation of breast tissue or cystic fluid using a very thin needle.
Also see in Resources -> Diagnostic Tools.

First-line Treatment
Treatment given following adjuvant treatment, when there is a recurrence.

Flow Cytometry
A test of cancer cells to determine the number that are in the S-Phase or dividing stage, and to look at the DNA content, called "ploidy." These factors are correlated to aggressiveness of tumor growth.





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