E-wareness: Breast Cancer

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BREAST CANCER

(October 2014)

 

Campaign Coordinator: Linda Catran

 

LINDA’S MESSAGE:

I had just pulled up to my weekly Rotary meeting, for which I was serving as Treasurer, when I received a call from my doctor. The news wasn’t good. The results from a biopsy I had the previous day were positive. I had breast cancer. It knocked the wind out of me. I panicked. My mind went blank.

That was four years ago. Before surgery. Before numerous CT scans. Before radiation. Before IV infusions. It seems almost like a lifetime ago, even though I continue to take medication daily.

Since then I have learned a lot. One of the most surprising statistics to me is that one in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. And when I reached out to family and friends after my diagnosis, I was surprised to learn that several women close to me were also treated for the disease. I also noticed men in the breast cancer center, and was surprised to learn that 1% of all breast cancers occur in men.

I look forward during this month of Breast Cancer E-wareness to learning more, sharing links and hopefully encouraging women to be vigilant about regular screening.

 

LINKS TO IMPORTANT ONLINE INFORMATION:

If you read only one piece of the information we share, please read:

 

Other categories/sites which are helpful…

A simple breast cancer risk assessment tool:
http://www.cancer.gov/bcrisktool/
News and information on prevention, detection, treatment and long term survivorship:
http://www.dslrf.org/breastcancer/
Early detection, diagnosis and staging:
http://www.cancer.org/cancer/breastcancer/detailedguide/breast-cancer-diagnosis
Types of breast cancer:
http://www.breastcancer.org/symptoms/types
Helpful information on life after a breast cancer diagnosis
http://breastcancer.about.com/
Treatment and side effects:
http://www.breastcancer.org/treatment

GUEST SPEAKER:

We were fortunate to sit down with Dr. John Glaspy, Co-Chair of Hematology/Oncology with the UCLA Department of Medicine.  Dr. Glaspy shares a wealth of knowledge, but also urges that we step forward with advocacy.

Read more about him here on his UCLA page.

If the embedded video does not work, please click here to view it on YouTube.

 

FOR THE FUTURE:

What now?

According to Dr. Glaspy in the video interview above, in general women who do not otherwise have a genetic predisposition still realize a relatively high risk for getting breast cancer merely by virtue of their gender. With few options for prevention, annual screening mammograms for women over 50 remain the best tool for catching cancers early. Beyond that, Dr. Glaspy suggests that advocacy and awareness are the most effective tools for ultimately combating breast cancer.

In the past several years, research has led to advances in treatments for breast cancer that are more focused on the type of breast cancer, which in turn results in more favorable survival rates, especially when cancers are caught early. Keeping the public eye trained on the issue of breast cancer, and advocating for continued funding for breast cancer research, will help ensure that this important research continues to be funded.

I hope the information provided through this month-long campaign for breast cancer awareness will serve as a useful source of tools and resources when needed. In the meantime, sign up for a breast cancer walk; donate to a breast cancer fund; volunteer to participate in a research study to raise awareness and further research. Listed below are but a few from which to choose.

Avon Walk (http://www.avonwalk.org/), Making Strides Against Breast Cancer (http://www.cancer.org/involved/participate/makingstridesagainstbreastcancer/), Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation (http://www.dslrf.org/breastcancer/), National Breast Cancer Coalition (http://www.breastcancerdeadline2020.org/), Army of Women (http://www.armyofwomen.org/), UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center (http://www.cancer.ucla.edu/)

 

THE ROTARY E-CLUB OF THE GREATER SAN FERNANDO VALLEY asks you take a look at more of our website, especially the PROJECTS tab, and invites local visitors to contact us for more information about joining our fun, active, flexible team.

The opinions expressed by guest speakers are those of the speaker(s) and not necessarily of the Rotary E-Club of The Greater San Fernando Valley or its members. No endorsement is implied. Programs are presented for informational purposes only.

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4 responses to E-wareness: Breast Cancer

  1. Glad you are okay. It is a wake up call on so many levels. When I had my scare, all I thought about was the kids. Total blank is right.

  2. Informative interview. Linda, thank you for sharing your story and making links to important online information available. My friends and family members who have experienced a myriad of emotions linked to breast cancer have benefitted greatly from support groups. As with any turbulent time in one’s life, the love and support of those around us can carry us through so much.

  3. Lots of good information. Thanks, Linda, for arranging the interview with Dr. Glaspy.

  4. Great program, Linda.

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