Ask an Expert: View a Question

Ask an Expert is a free question-and-answer service about breast cancer and breast health that is available on weekends. If you'd like to ask a question or comment, please visit us again on Saturday or Sunday. In the meantime, please search the existing topics using the search tool at the top of the page. It's quite possible that one of our many existing topics already addresses your question.

If you would like a consultation with a breast specialist at the Johns Hopkins Avon Foundation Breast Center, call 443-997-8282. It is possible to get an appointment for a second opinion within a few days of contacting us.

We hope you find the information helpful!.

ForumQuestionsAsk a Question
Family Support
Questions about breast cancer & family support.
162 This functionality is disabled from time to time due to volume.

AskedPublicly Submitted Question
9/22/2013My wife has "invasive er-pr-pos lobular her-#2 carcinoma neg". I am her caregiver, and she has chosen palliative care only. I do not know what to expect, and need to learn. She also has Systemic Mastocytosis and non alcoholic fatty liver disease (cirrhosis) due to years of prescribed pain meds. She has been taken off all her meds due to her liver. Looking for insight, and maybe a support system for me. I do not understand the risks and things to come.
RepliedJHU's Breast Center Reply
9/22/2013The tumor has favorable prognostic factors of being ER and PR positive and HER2 negative. the size of the tumor helps provide additional information regarding what to anticipate. How old she is too. the grade of the cells also needs to be known. invasive lobular usually grows slower than invasive ductal. it usually can be managed for an extended period of time with hormonal therapy so if she would consider hormonal therapy (think of it like an antiestrogen drug) that may keep the cancer in check for several years.

Cancer that is left untreated over time grows. the tumor in the breast gets bigger and bigger until at some point it is so big that it can even break through the skin and be what is called a fungating mass. the cancer also spreads onto other organ sites like the bone, liver and lung. nausea, weight loss, bone pain, fatigue, all can accompany the progression of the disease. have her consider a second opinion. sometimes if the tumor has not already spread to other organ sites then doing surgery to remove it from the breast cancer greatly help in preventing the cancer from spreading elsewhere even if she opts for no other treatment.

Please note: This service is not intended to provide primary medical advice concerning specific medical care or treatment. Ask an Expert is a free service operated by health care professionals at the Johns Hopkins Avon Foundation Breast Center. Due to the volume of questions and their complexity, there are times when medical oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists or oncology nurses are consulted for their input. These individuals volunteer their time for this service and will respond as soon as they are able. Please do not post or send the same question to us in multiple locations or categories.

The contents of this portion of the website cannot be used as a substitute for a consultation with your doctor or other healthcare provider. It also may not represent the opinions of other Johns Hopkins professionals. It is a free service performed on volunteer time and intended to provide feedback to questions posted by consumers however should not be used as a directive or instructions to now follow. Seeing your own medical provider is always important in getting your needs and questions addressed. In the majority of cases, a clinical examination, review of pathology slides and xrays, along with other medical information is needed to truly provide a consultative service. If you wish to receive a formal consultation with our physicians please call 443-997-8282 for surgical appointments and 410-955-8964 for medical or radiation oncology appts. For breast imaging, call 410-955-4100.


© The Johns Hopkins University, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and Johns Hopkins Health System, All rights reserved.