Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that starts in the cells of the breast. The disease occurs almost entirely in women, but men can get it too. The cancer cells if spread to lymph nodes there is a higher chance that the cells could have also gotten into the bloodstream and spread (metastasized) to other sites in the body. The more lymph nodes with breast cancer cells, the more likely it is that the cancer may be found in other organs as well. Because of this finding cancer in one or more lymph nodes often affects the treatment plan. Still not all women with cancer cells in their lymph nodes develop metastases and some women can have no cancer cells in their lymph nodes and later develop metastases.
Screening such as mammograms is to find cancers before they start to cause symptoms. Breast cancers found during screening exams are more likely to be small and still confined to the breast Breast cancers that are found because they can be felt tend to be larger and are more likely to have already spread beyond the breast. In contrast. The size of a breast cancer and how far it has spread are important factors in predicting the prognosis (outlook) for a woman with this disease.