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A 42-year-old member asked:

Can stage four cancer develop in three months?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Jefferson Chen
Neurosurgery 34 years experience
Yes: Certainly, for the brain this can develop. If a person has a lower stage cancer, for example of the lung or breast, once it has gone to the brain, it by definition is stage 4. This can evolve very rapidly and certainly within 3 months.

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A 50-year-old member asked:

What are the differences in stage 1, 2, 3 and 4 cancer?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Carlos Encarnacion
Medical Oncology 35 years experience
Depends: The stage of most cancers is determined by 3 factors. T: characteristics of the tumor itself (size, depth, etc), N: involvement of local lymph nodes, and M: metastases (distant spread). These combine in different ways to determine staging, depending on the tumor type. Certain cancer types have other ways to be staged.
A 46-year-old member asked:

When was cancer split up into the four stages?

1 doctor answer3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Carlos Encarnacion
Medical Oncology 35 years experience
Good question, TY!: I think Duke's staging for colon cancer was devised in the mid 30's and the FIGO classification for gynecological cancers in the mid 50's. The TNM classification (used for most cancers) was initially devised in the mid 40's. Of course, they have all been revised many times since and still get revised regularly. I expect molecular and genetic factors to be incorporated into these systems.
A 48-year-old member asked:

What are symptoms of stage four cancer?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 44 years experience
Depends: Each common cancer has a staging system depending on how far it has spread, and in turn, the symptoms depend on exactly where the tumor has spread and what it's doing. There's no telling. A stage IV lung cancer in the liver will behave much differently than a stage IV lung cancer in the chest wall.

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Last updated Aug 11, 2013

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