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What is the difference between invasive breast cancer and carcinoma in situ?

Invasive breast cancer tends to be the more serious of the two types, because the abnormal and cancerous cells within the lobules or ducts break out into surrounding breast tissue. This allows the cancer to spread to the lymph nodes. In more advanced stages, cancer may also reach vital organs such as the liver, lungs or bones.

Carcinoma in situ is a condition in which abnormal cells grow inside the lobules or ducts and remain contained. Because these cells have not developed the ability to invade tissues beyond the ducts or lobules, they are not considered fully cancerous. Although carcinoma in situ has been deemed a pre-cancerous condition, it is important to recognize that it may increase the risk of, or develop into, invasive cancer.

Posted in: Breast Cancer