Metastatic breast cancer occurs when cancer spreads from the breast to another part of the body. Symptoms and treatment for this stage of breast cancer are different to those of the earlier stages.
Doctors may also refer to metastatic breast cancer as advanced breast cancer or stage 4 breast cancer.
Many people live for months or years after a healthcare professional has diagnosed metastatic breast cancer. Treatment can help a person live longer and slow down the progression of cancer.As a person with metastatic breast cancer approaches the end of life, their treatment approach might shift to palliative care. The aim of palliative care is to improve quality of life. Palliative care helps a person cope with end-of-life symptoms and focuses on the physical, emotional, and spiritual comfort and well-being of the person and their loved ones.