Fast Five Quiz: The Recurrence Risks for Breast Cancer

Elwyn C. Cabebe, MD; Stefania Morganti, MD


February 06, 2023

Advances in breast cancer treatments have increased the prevalence of long-term survivors. Although this is a positive development, it also comes with more opportunities over time for the cancer to recur. Although recurrence is more common in the early years after the primary diagnosis, patients with breast cancer may be at risk for recurrence for 30 or more years.

Breast cancer may recur after primary therapy, however, both locally and systemically. Risk for recurrence varies according to subtype of breast cancer, tumor stage, and other clinicopathologic variables. Although recurrence is more common in the first 5 years after primary therapy, risk for recurrence persists for up to two to three decades, especially for estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer.

How much do you know about the recurrence risks for breast cancer? Test your knowledge with this quick quiz.


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