Olivia Munn Diagnosed with Luminal B Breast Cancer – What Is It?

Actress Olivia Munn has opened up about how she was diagnosed with luminal B breast cancer in April 2023 and has since had both breasts surgically removed.

“[Munn’s OBYGYN] looked at factors such as my age, family history of breast cancer and the fact that I had my first child after the age of 30. She found my lifetime risk was 37 percent,” Munn wrote in an Instagram post. “Because of that score, I was sent for an MRI, which led to an ultrasound, which then led to a biopsy. The biopsy showed I had Luminal B cancer in both breasts.”

What is luminal B breast cancer?

To find the most effective way to treat cancer, it is now common for doctors to analyze the DNA of cancer cells. This gives an idea of ​​the nature of the cancer’s features and therefore how it can be tackled. Based on this analysis, breast cancers can be split into four main groups: basal-like or triple negative, HER2-positive, luminal A, and luminal B.

The type of breast cancer Munn was diagnosed with, luminal B, is a particularly aggressive, fast-growing form. This is because it produces too many proteins that promote cell growth and proliferation.

You might hear that this cancer is hormone receptor positive (for either or both estrogen and progesterone) and with high levels of Ki-67. Luminal B cancers can also be positive for HER2, a protein receptor involved in cell proliferation.

How common is it?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that approximately 242,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed annually in the United States. Of these, approximately 10 percent are classified as luminal B.

Who is at risk?

Although there are no factors that specifically put a person at risk for developing luminal B breast cancer, there are some factors that contribute to an increased risk of breast cancer in general. These include:

  • Being a woman, although men can get breast cancer too
  • Carrying certain genetic mutations, as in BRCA1 And BRCA2 genes – therefore breast cancer can sometimes run in families
  • Age
  • Onset periods before age 12 and onset of menopause after age 55
  • Have previously had breast cancer

What are the signs and symptoms?

The signs and symptoms of luminal B breast cancer may be the same as breast cancer in general. Some of the symptoms may include:

  • Changes in skin texture, e.g. wrinkles/dimples
  • Swelling in your armpit or around your collarbone
  • Bumps and thickening
  • Nipple discharge
  • A sudden, unusual change in size or shape
  • Nipple inversion and changes in direction
  • A rash or crusting on the nipple or surrounding area
  • Constant, unusual pain in your breast or armpit

Can it be treated?

Treatment for luminal B breast cancer may depend on a number of factors, taking into account elements such as the proteins that characterize this subtype, how far the cancer has spread, your age and your health. Together, this is what is known as personalized medicine, an approach that is increasingly being used in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

Luminal B breast cancer can often be treated with chemotherapy, but can also involve hormone therapy, treatments that target HER2 or surgery. In Munn’s case, she opted for a double mastectomy: the surgical removal of both breasts.

What is the prognosis?

Although the survival rate of luminal B cancer may depend on whether it has spread or not, of the four subtypes of breast cancer, it has the second highest five-year survival rate, at 90.7 percent.

All “explainer” articles are confirmed by fact checkers be correct at time of publication. Text, images and links can be edited, deleted or added at a later time to keep the information current.

The content of this article is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified healthcare providers with any questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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