Are Mastectomies Necessary for Women with BRCA1 or BRCA2? What About for Women Without the Breast Cancer Gene? – When Angelina Jolie publicly announced her double mastectomy in 2013, she was praised for possibly saving many women’s lives. But we know more today than we did then and experts now agree that too many women are undergoing unnecessary mastectomies. Here are the facts.
Are breast implants safe? What is FDA’s Track Record? – In 2011, the FDA announced that saline breast implants and silicone gel breast implants were linked to a rare cancer of the immune system.
After Mastectomies, an Unexpected Blow: Numb New Breasts – Dane’e McCree decided to have her breasts removed. Her doctor assured her that surgery would spare her nipples and leave her with natural-looking breasts.
Sientra’s Silimed Brand “Gummy Bear” Silicone Gel Breast Implants Pose Safety Questions – In December 2012, the FDA approved Sientra’s “Silimed silicone gel breast implants.” These implants are also called “gummy breast implants” because they are made of a thicker gel that is said to resemble candy gummy bears. But are they safe?
Can Vitamin D Prevent Cancer? – New research suggests that vitamin D may help women diagnosed with breast cancer to survive the disease.
What women need to know about inflammatory breast cancer – Separate facts from myths about inflammatory breast cancer.
Could a common and inexpensive heart medicine (beta-blockers) help cancer patients live longer? – Doctors and researchers noticed that when cancer patients took beta-blockers because of their heart disease, they tended to live longer than other cancer patients. They decided to study whether beta-blockers significantly improve survival for several different types of cancer.
DCIS, LCIS, pre-cancer and other "stage zero" breast conditions: what kind of treatment – if any – is needed? – Many women are diagnosed with abnormal breast conditions that are not cancer or may never develop into invasive cancer, such as DCIS.
Less radical surgery is a healthier choice for women with breast cancer – Experts have long advised that lumpectomy patients live as long as mastectomy patients. But the latest research, based on thousands of women, indicates that women with early-stage breast cancer are more likely to live longer, healthier lives if they choose less radical surgery.
Summary of: Breast Implants, Self-Esteem, Quality of Life, and the Risk of Suicide – Breast augmentation is the most common cosmetic surgery in the United States, and many women are also encouraged to choose breast implants for reconstruction after a mastectomy. However, studies in the United States and Scandinavian countries have shown that suicide rates are higher for women with implants.
Breast implants after mastectomy: Risks you need to know – Concerns about breast implants in post mastectomy reconstruction.
Why do mastectomy patients with breast implants commit suicide? – One study of suicide among women who got breast implants after mastectomy found that their suicide rate was 10 times higher compared to other mastectomy patients.
DCIS: Mostly good news – More women are getting an early diagnosis of breast cancer known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). Although it is good to find cancer before it becomes life-threatening, many women do not get enough information on their treatment options and end up receiving unnecessary treatment.
The benefits of exercise after getting diagnosed with cancer – You may have heard that regular exercise can reduce your risk of developing cancer, but did you know it’s also good for cancer patients who are undergoing or have completed treatment?
Prophylactic or optional mastectomies – If you are someone you know is thinking about getting a mastectomy, read this article to learn important information that should be discussed with your doctor before choosing your breast cancer treatment.
Mastectomy v. lumpectomy: who decides? – Many women who are eligible for breast-conserving surgery, such as lumpectomy, are getting mastectomies. Studies have found that some women are not even told that lumpectomies are an option.
Free patient booklet on ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) – Our patient booklet, DCIS: What You Need to Know, helps women diagnosed with DCIS understand the difference between DCIS and Stage 1 breast cancer, and discuss treatment options with their doctor. It was funded by a grant from the DC Cancer Consortium through the Department of Health, Government of the District of Columbia, with additional support from the Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Foundation.
Tamoxifen and other hormonal therapies for treating early stage breast cancer and preventing it – What are the risks and benefits of tamoxifen and other hormonal treatments for breast cancer?
BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations: when your genes increase your cancer risk – BRCA1 and BRCA2 are human genes that produce proteins that suppress tumors and repair damage to our DNA. If there is a mutation in one of these genes and they do not work properly, DNA damage may not be repaired. This can eventually cause cancer. If you find out that you have the BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, it doesn’t mean you will definitely get breast or ovarian cancer. There are a few ways you can lower your risk of breast and ovarian cancer
Early stage breast cancer: a patient and doctor dialogue – Answers to your breast cancer questions.
Can girls lower their breast cancer risk by eating peanut butter? – Peanut butter, a favorite food of so many kids and overwhelmed parents, may help ward off abnormal breast conditions linked to cancer.
A booklet for patients: surgery choices for women with early-stage breast cancer – Concerned about your treatment options for early-stage breast cancer? Look at our free booklet made in collaboration with the National Cancer Institute.
Angelina Jolie’s decision – Did Angelina Jolie make the right decision? And should that influence other women? Our president Dr. Diana Zuckerman explains why Angelina’s risk of breast cancer is lower than she was told and what the implications are for you.
Will breast implants improve your life? – Despite the claims of plastic surgeons that breast implants improve patients’ self-esteem and quality of life, there is no scientific support for those statements.
What are the alternatives to traditional radiation therapy for breast cancer? – Women with early-stage breast cancer can safely choose lumpectomy instead of mastectomy if they also undergo radiation treatment to reduce recurrence. However, traditional radiation therapy requires a treatment schedule that is difficult for many patients. Several newer types of radiation treatments have been developed so that more women can have the choice of lumpectomy with radiation.
Surgery after lumpectomy: Is it possible to get all the cancer out on the first try? – Almost 25% of breast cancer lumpectomies are followed by additional surgery. A lack of agreement among surgeons, different surgical practices at hospitals, and other factors may be contributing to why some women are having too many surgeries and others not enough.
Free fast facts on ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) for medical professionals – The Cancer Prevention and Treatment Fund has created a fact sheet on DCIS for doctors, nurses, patient navigators and social workers. Fast Facts for Medical Professionals summarizes the NIH State-of-the-Science Conference Statement as well as the latest research on treatment options. Fast Facts was funded by a grant from the DC Cancer Consortium through the Department of Health, Government of the District of Columbia.
Are silicone breast implants safe for cancer patients? – Women with breast cancer often choose mastectomy because they don’t want to ever have to think about the cancer again. Unfortunately, the latest research shows that if they get reconstruction with silicone gel implants, they are likely to have many complications and need additional surgery.
Women as guinea pigs: tungsten in breast bancer patients – A year after their doctors used a tungsten shield during radiation treatment after lumpectomy, some women must consider mastectomies to rid their bodies of the tungsten, not cancer–a problem that would not have happened if the device had been carefully tested before the device was sold.
FDA review indicates possible association between breast implants and a rare cancer – ALCL, a type of cancer of the immune system, is developing in the breast area of women with breast implants more often than for women who don’t have breast implants. When women with implants have breast pain or abnormalities they need to see their primary care physician or OB/GYN to have it checked out.
Drugs to avoid for women taking tamoxifen – If you are taking tamoxifen, be sure to avoid any medications that interfere with its effectiveness.
Gene test will help determine which women with breast cancer will benefit from which chemotherapy – A test to measure CEP17 can help physicians choose the most effective chemotherapy to improve a patient’s chances of survival. Chemotherapy has very unpleasant side effects, and choosing the most effective chemotherapy the first time helps patients fight cancer more quickly.
Breast cancer survivors on Tamoxifen should avoid certain Antidepressants – New research shows that taking the antidepressants paroxetine (Paxil is the brand name) or fluoxetine (Prozac is the brand name) while taking tamoxifen can increase risk of death from breast cancer.
Decisions in the dark: The FDA, breast cancer survivors, and silicone implants – Breast Cancer Survivors Making Surgery Decisions With Limited Information
Tips for preventing a recurrence of breast cancer – Maintaining a healthier lifestyle can help prevent cancer from recurring.
Q and A for breast cancer patients about keeping or reconstructing their breasts – FAQs about keeping or restructuring your breasts after breast cancer treatment.