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Cutaneous Metastatic Breast Cancer

Susan Moore
CJON 2002, 6(5), 255-260 DOI: 10.1188/02.CJON.255-260

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women and the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the United States. Many women diagnosed with breast cancer will achieve a cure with surgery followed by adjuvant chemotherapy, hormonal therapy, or radiation therapy; however, some breast cancer survivors will develop locally recurrent disease. Skin metastases are one of the most distressing presentations of locally recurrent breast cancer. The purpose of this article is to increase oncology nurses' understanding of the pathophysiology of cutaneous metastases, facilitate recognition of the various presentations of cutaneous metastatic breast cancer, discuss management of both the underlying disease process and skin lesions, and identify issues of psychosocial support for patients and families throughout the continuum of illness.

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