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Systemic treatment for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer

Author
Anne F Schott, MD
Section Editor
Daniel F Hayes, MD
Deputy Editor
Sadhna R Vora, MD

INTRODUCTION

Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer and the leading cause of cancer-related death among females worldwide [1]. In the United States, up to 5 percent of women diagnosed with breast cancer have metastatic disease at the time of first presentation despite the gains in early detection. In addition, up to 30 percent of women with early-stage, nonmetastatic breast cancer at diagnosis will develop distant metastatic disease [2]. Although metastatic breast cancer is unlikely to be cured, meaningful improvements in survival have been seen, coincident with the introduction of newer systemic therapies [3-5].

Current treatment options vary based on whether the tumor is hormone receptor positive (estrogen [ER] and/or progesterone receptor [PR] positive) and whether or not human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is overexpressed (ie, HER2 positive). At the current time, there are no other validated predictive markers for specific molecularly targeted therapies in breast cancer.

The treatment of HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer is reviewed here. An overview of the approach to metastatic breast cancer, endocrine therapy for hormone receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer, chemotherapy for metastatic breast cancer, and breast cancer in men are reviewed separately. In addition, commonly used chemotherapy treatment regimens used in the treatment of breast cancer are also compiled in a separate topic.

(See "Systemic treatment for metastatic breast cancer: General principles".)

(See "Treatment approach to metastatic hormone receptor-positive breast cancer: Endocrine therapy".)

                       

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Literature review current through: Nov 2016. | This topic last updated: Fri Oct 07 00:00:00 GMT+00:00 2016.
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