Secondary breast cancer

Secondary breast cancer means that a cancer that began in your breast has spread to another part of the body. This includes the liver, lungs, brain, or bones. 

Unfortunately, secondary breast cancer can't be cured. The aim of treatment is to control the cancer, relieve the symptoms and maintain your quality of life Open a glossary item. Many people can live a normal life for a number of years.

Secondary breast cancer is also called advanced or metastatic breast cancer. 

What is secondary breast cancer?

Secondary breast cancer is different from locally advanced breast cancer. You have tests such as a biopsy and a CT scan to help diagnose secondary breast cancer. 

Symptoms of secondary breast cancer

Symptoms of secondary breast cancer depend on where the cancer has spread to. Common symptoms include pain and tiredness (fatigue). 

Treatment options for secondary breast cancer

Deciding about treatment can be difficult when you have secondary breast cancer. Treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy can help to reduce symptoms and might make you feel better.

Last reviewed: 
19 Jul 2023
Next review due: 
19 Jul 2026
Json LD: