• Is it common to have the stage of cancer changed after surgery?

    Asked by Cheryl2 on Sunday, July 22, 2012

    Is it common to have the stage of cancer changed after surgery?

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      I don't know about "common", but my first surgery was called a "staging" surgery to determine what stage I was. I had an exploratory abdomen surgery, then they decided where I was, and what tx to give me.

      over 4 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      Assuming the purpose of the surgery is to remove one or more tumors or organs containing tumors or cancerous cells, then yes, not only it is common, it is a given. Generally speaking cancer staging is based on the the size and location of tumors or cancerous cells, so if surgery removes part or all of those tumors or cancerous cells, then it affect the stage of the cancer.

      over 4 years ago
    • rbd100's Avatar

      My breast cancer was thought to be in situ per the many biopsies but after the surgery they found it to be invasive. I had the second surgery to stage it or see how far it spread out. I guess you never really know untill they get in there.

      over 4 years ago
    • Carol-Charlie's Avatar

      I was diagnosed with Stage IV Ovarian Cancer.... The surgeon then did the surgery and removed a 39 lb tumor and literally scrapped the cancer he could see off my intestines and euretha.... He then changed me to Stage III. That was back in Feb. of 06.... I did chemo for almost two years and have been cancer free since then. God bless you and help you through this.

      over 4 years ago
    • attypatty's Avatar

      Dear Cheryl12:
      I would say it's definitely not uncommon. A biopsy captures, at best, a sliver of the cancer when there could be a whole fence in there. I got an "upgrade" from Stage 1 to Stage II after the lumpectomy. And they didn't even offer a free glass of champagne! The difference between the pre-surgery biopsy and the biopsy of the tumor afterward was the size. The sliver that the biopsy took out was 1cm long. The actual length of the tumor after excision was 2.5cm. The other thing that changed after the surgery was the grade of the tumor. The biopsy was judged as Grade 1; after surgery testing upgraded it to Grade 2, based on faster mitotic activity (meaning it was more aggressive than the biopsied tissue revealed).
      A biopsy is kind of like sticking a knife into a cake to see if it's done. The knife blade can let you know what the cake is doing just where you insert it, but really doesn't let you know how the rest of the pan is doing. You'll never know until you eat the whole thing.
      Fight On,

      over 4 years ago
    • sofarsogood's Avatar

      Yes, at least more often than you think. I'm glad I did not opt for a lumpectomy, and had a mastectomy. I went from very early Stage I , to a late Stage II with lymph nodes.

      It was worse than receiving the original diagnosis.

      over 4 years ago
    • lisaepstein's Avatar

      I had a breast biopsy and they said my tumor was 2.1mm and 70 percent positive everything else negative. After the lumpectomy size stayed the same only now it turned out be triple negative. My doctor says two labs have different results or maybe when we did the biopsy they pulled out most of the positive because it was so small. My doctor didnt think it mattered because it was so small we were going to treat it the same anyhow.

      over 4 years ago
    • marguerite's Avatar

      Yes before my surgrey I was a stage 3 breast cancer after it was a stage 2

      about 4 years ago

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