Breast cancer treatment
Treatment for early or locally advanced breast cancer aims to remove the cancer and reduce the risk of the cancer spreading or coming back (recurring). As there are different types of breast cancer, treatment varies from person to person. Your doctors will recommend the most suitable treatment for you.
The choice of treatment will depend on your test results, where the cancer is in the breast, the cancer’s stage and grade, and whether the cancer is hormone receptor or HER2 positive or triple negative, along with your age and general health, and your preferences. Usually more than one treatment is used, and treatments may be given in different sequences and combinations.
Men diagnosed with early or locally advanced breast cancer have similar treatment options to women. Some men may struggle with feelings of isolation or embarrassment, as breast cancer is most commonly diagnosed in women. Resources for men with breast cancer are available at breastcancerinmen.canceraustralia.gov.au.
Learn about these treatments for early or locally advanced breast cancer:
- Radiation therapy
- Hormone therapy (only for ER+ and/or PR+ cancers)
- Targeted therapy (only for HER2+ cancers)
Prof Christobel Saunders, Professor of Surgical Oncology and Head, Division of Surgery, The University of Western Australia, and Consultant Surgeon, Royal Perth, Fiona Stanley and St John of God Subiaco Hospitals, WA; Dr Marie-Frances Burke, Radiation Oncologist, Medical Director, Genesis CancerCare Queensland, QLD; Kylie Campbell, Breast Care Nurse and Clinical Lead, Murraylands, McGrath Foundation, SA; Carmen Heathcote, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council Queensland, QLD; Annmaree Mitchell, Consumer; Sarah Pratt, Nurse Coordinator, Breast Service, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Dr Wendy Vincent, Breast Physician, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and Royal Hospital for Women, Randwick, NSW, and Clinical Director BreastScreen NSW, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, NSW; A/Prof Nicholas Wilcken, Director of Medical Oncology, Westmead Hospital, and Co-ordinating Editor, Cochrane Breast Cancer Group, NSW. We also thank the health professionals, consumers and editorial teams who have worked on previous editions of this title. This booklet is funded through the generosity of the people of Australia.
View the Cancer Council NSW editorial policy.
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