Understanding cancer recurrence

An overview of advanced cancer and living with metastatic disease

cancer recurrence

Anne Schott, M.D.

The following interview with Anne Schott, M.D., was first published in the Spring 2014 issue of Thrive.

No matter your diagnosis or treatment status, every person who has been diagnosed with cancer has a common concern: what if my cancer comes back? It’s a large and complicated topic, due to the wide variety of ways cancer works in the body, as well as the unpredictability of the disease.

We spoke with Anne Schott, M.D., associate professor of medical oncology at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, who specializes in breast cancer, to cover some of the basic questions patients ask about their cancer, the possibility of its return and what it means when cancer is metastatic.

Q. What do we mean when we say a person’s cancer is recurrent?

A cancer recurrence means that a person who was thought to be cancer free has cancer again. This can be interpreted in several ways. Continue reading