Mercy’s Dr. Neil B. Friedman, Director, The Hoffberger Breast Center, Discusses Breast Cancer Recurrence

June 6, 2017
Dr. Neil Friedman - Breast Center at Mercy - Baltimore, MD

Any woman who has breast cancer worries about the cancer coming back.  Recurrence happens in a small percentage of cases, but it does happen, usually within five years of the initial treatment.

There are two kinds of recurrence:  a local recurrence is when the cancer comes back in the treated breast or near the mastectomy scar; a distant recurrence is when the cancer grows outside the breast to another part of the body, such as the lymph nodes, bones, liver, lungs or brain.

“It used to be that several decades ago, if you had a distant recurrence, patients died within a few years,” said Dr. Neil B. Friedman, Director of The Hoffberger Breast Center at Mercy.

“Now it's not rare to see patients out 10 years, 12 years, 15 years because we're getting better and better with newer and newer drugs and that has made all the difference,” he said.

After treatment, breast cancer patients need to pay very close attention to their bodies. If something just doesn't feel right, patients should call their doctor right away.

View Mercy breast cancer surgeon Dr. Neil B. Friedman’s interview about breast cancer recurrence.


Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874, Mercy Medical Center is a university-affiliated medical facility named one of the top 100 hospitals in the U.S. by Thomson-Reuters with a national reputation for women’s health. Mercy is home to the nationally acclaimed Weinberg Center for Women’s Health and Medicine as well as the $400+ million, 20-story Mary Catherine Bunting Center. For more information visit Mercy online at, Facebook, Twitter or call 1-800-MD-MERCY.

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