Breast Cancer Awareness Month
October 1, 2020
Breast cancer is not a single disease. It’s actually a group of diseases.
When diagnosing breast cancer, one of the first steps is identifying what type
you have. This provides key information about how the cancer may behave.
When you have a breast biopsy, the tissue is tested for hormone receptors (HR). It’s also tested for something called human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). Each can be involved in the development of breast cancer.
HER2 is a gene that creates HER2 proteins, or receptors. These receptors
help control growth and repair of breast cells. An overexpression of HER2
protein causes out-of-control reproduction of breast cells.
HER2-positive breast cancers tend to be more aggressive than HER2-negative breast cancers. Along with tumor grade and cancer stage, HR and HER2 status helps determine your treatment options.