When you hear triple negative you probably think it is a good thing. This is what most people thought when I shared my diagnosis. Unfortunately it is not.
A breast cancer diagnosis is usually based upon the presence, or lack of, three “receptors” known to fuel most breast cancers: estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). The most successful treatments for breast cancer target these receptors.
Unfortunately, none of these receptors are found in women with triple negative breast cancer. In other words, a triple negative breast cancer diagnosis means that the offending tumor is estrogen receptor-negative, progesterone receptor-negative and HER2-negative, thus giving rise to the name “triple negative breast cancer.” On a positive note, this type of breast cancer is typically responsive to chemotherapy. Because of its triple negative status, however, triple negative tumors generally do not respond to receptor targeted treatments. Triple negative breast cancer can be particularly aggressive, and more likely to recur than other subtypes of breast cancer.
This is not a day to celebrate but to raise awareness and funds to continue research and help others. Pink Ribbon Stiletos was founded to do just that. Please take this time to donate to support our cause. Every little bit helps.