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Cancer Stages With Staging Chart

Updated on September 11, 2016
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Carolee is a passionate writer with a love for learning and teaching. She is a published author, poet, blogger, and content creator.

What are Cancer Stages?

Cancer stages are the different levels of your disease based on how advanced it is.Certain factors are taken into consideration when determining cancer stages which will be explained further.

During your search to learn all you can about your cancer you should take the time or insist that your doctor explain in simple terms all he can about your cancer.

Cancer comes in stages and all types of cancer are different in each stage. It is important that you know which stage you are at in order to get the proper treatment. Here is what you should do:

-Make a list of all you need to know to determine your prognosis.

One of the items on the list should include what stage your cancer is at, how aggressive it is and your chances of recovery.

There are certain details you should be aware of about staging or cancer stages. Staging is the process performed to determine the different cancer stages. The doctors will do a staging to evaluate:-

  • How big the cancer is
  • Where the cancer has spread to
  • Any medical problems being caused by the cancer.

Staging is done by:-

  • Using your history (from the diagnosis to this point)
  • Physical exams
  • Other tests, if needed, such as scans, blood tests and X-Rays
  • In some cases, biopsies or surgery.

Cancer stages or staging is calculated using numbers with the highest number being the most advanced stage. It is important to note that for every cancer type the stages differ in terms of reference. For example a stage 2 for a carcinoma might be different for a stage 2 lymphoma.

Staging is important to know your prognosis, your treatment options and to evaluate your response to the therapy that you will receive.

The most popular system used to determine staging is called TNM. Meaning - T (tumor), N (lymph nodes) and M (metastasis).

See the chart for General staging info.

Cancer staging table
Cancer staging table | Source

Cancer Stages

As I mentioned above each type of cancer will give you a different reference for each cancer stage. You cannot determine your cancer stage by reading an article. This is determined only by tests and exams. A stage 2 breast cancer may differ from a stage 2 lung cancer. Cancer stages range from 0 - 4 with variations in between.

Main source of information: Diagnosis Cancer by Wendy Schlessel Harpham M.D

Here is a staging chart for Breast Cancer:-

Breast Cancer Stages
Breast Cancer Stages | Source


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    • PaddyMac1984 profile image

      Patrick McCormack 

      6 years ago from Nottingham, England

      Good Hub. Its nice to have staging explained well. This can be difficult to understand. Working in histology has provided me with an 'inside' knowledge however nice work on explaining the process. Voted up and useful. Thanks

    • profile image

      Emerald Strachan 

      8 years ago

      Thank you Catspirit, you are right. People don't like talking about it, but it is our duty to inform them. My Great grandmother had colon cancer but she was too old to have it operated on so she died. I guess my mission is based on the fact that I too am at risk for the disease.

    • catspirit profile image


      8 years ago

      Thank you for the informative hub. Everyone should check this out. Cancer, something most of us will face in our life-time but no one dares talk about

    • profile image

      Emerald Strachan 

      8 years ago

      @Flora, thank you! I realized that people did not quite understand cancer. Most of the articles were about specific kinds of cancer but the general ramifications were not understood. That's why I decided to do these articles.

      @VENZKHVAM, thank you. I do remember you giving some very useful advice. I really appreciate it.

      @Nspeel, thank you for reading. Yes many people don't talk about it because they don't quite understand it and they are scared.

    • Nspeel profile image


      8 years ago from Myrtle Beach

      very very very useful... Great hub something a lot of people do not talk about. Voted up and shared hopefully this helps many people.

    • VENZKHVAM profile image


      8 years ago from Milk way galaxy, trying to find a more adventurous place in another galaxy with my great followers

      Dear Emerald,

      Very good, this is what I asked you to do in your last hub Putting a link of your last hub here in the end will help people to navigate and correlate both the hubs.

      Thanks for the wonderful and useful hub which I gained knowledge in clear.

      this deserves an voted up and useful.

      With warm regards

      Dinesh Nair

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image


      8 years ago

      These are a wonderful series of articles to teach people more about cancer. The thing about Ovarian cancer is that it's very hard to detect before it hits a dangerous stage.


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