Summer 2019 Blogging Challenge

View from hike at the Grand Canyon.I’m delighted to participate in the 2019 Summer Blogging Challenge offered by friend and fellow blogger, Nancy, at Nancy’s Point. The challenge involves answering a series of random questions about ourselves and blogging. In addition, as Nancy explains, this year’s challenge is a “blog hop” which means that it’s a chance for all who participate to “hop around” to other blogs and discover some new writers and maybe some new friends as well.

So, let’s get right to it. Here are the 14 random questions that Nancy has posed along with my responses. Continue reading

Making Breast Cancer Prevention a Priority

A new year and improving health careWhat are the best ideas for how we could prevent breast cancer in whole populations? This was the big question behind a recent competition sponsored by the California Breast Cancer Research Program. I attended the final round of the competition via livestream and was impressed by the variety and creativity of the proposals presented. Continue reading

Breast Cancer: Are We Still Making Progress?

 

Are we still making progress against breast cancer?Learning about progress against cancer has been a main theme here on After Twenty Years since I started this blog about five years ago. One of my first posts in 2013 was a look back at progress against breast cancer in the twenty years since I had been diagnosed.

Now, as we come to the end of 2018, let’s take another look back, but this time let’s focus on what we’ve seen in progress against breast cancer over the last five years or so. Continue reading

Breast Cancer Treatment: The TAILORx Clinical Trial

TAILORx clinical trial findings will help personalize breast cancer treatment decisions.Earlier this month, the long-awaited results of the TAILORx clinical trial were announced.

The findings from this study are important for early stage breast cancer patients with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer. The study results are expected to assist many patients in this group in determining whether chemotherapy should be part of their treatment.

The TAILORx findings are also interesting when viewed as part of a developing trend in treatment for early stage breast cancer away from a one-size-fits all approach toward more personalized care. Continue reading

5 Cancer Research Stories Worth Following – Spring 2018

A look at several "need-to-know" cancer research stories reported in Spring 2018.What’s the latest “need to know” news in cancer research? In this post, I’ll briefly review several of the most interesting cancer research stories that have been in the news this spring.

These are a few of the recent stories that seem to have the greatest potential impact, at least from my perspective, and that I know I’ll want to follow as they develop further.

Among the topics we cover this time are ways in which researchers are working to improve immunotherapy treatments so they can be effective for more people. Continue reading

Making Healthcare More Affordable: Review of “An American Sickness” by Elisabeth Rosenthal

Review of 'An American Sickness' by Elisabeth RosenthalWe hear a lot these days about research into promising new immunotherapies and targeted cancer treatments. But when prices for new cancer therapies often exceed $100,000 a year, how many people could realistically be helped by new treatments like these? And prices for older drugs are accelerating too.

A recent article in the New York Times reported on the stories of a number of individuals struggling to cope with drug prices for essential medications that are far beyond what they can afford.

And it’s not just prescription drug prices that are rising at astronomical rates. All aspects of healthcare costs are affected, including prices for hospital care, medical devices and physician care. Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal, in her book “An American Sickness” gives us some perspective on how we got to where we are today with healthcare costs in this country and what we can do about it. Continue reading

5 Cancer Research Stories Worth Following – Winter 2018

A look at several "need-to-know" cancer research stories reported in Winter 2018.What’s the latest “need to know” news in cancer research? In this post, I’ll briefly review several of the most interesting cancer research stories that have been in the news this winter.

These are a few of the recent stories that seem to have the greatest potential impact, at least from my perspective, and that I know I’ll want to follow as they develop further.

Among the topics we cover this time are a new targeted therapy for cancer that’s making its way into breast cancer treatment and the possible negative impact on treatment effectiveness of certain compounds commonly found in food.

Continue reading

5 Cancer Research Stories Worth Following – Fall 2017

A look at several "need-to-know" cancer research stories for Fall 2017.What’s the latest “need to know” news in cancer research? In this post, I’ll briefly review several of the most interesting cancer research stories that have been in the news this fall.

These are a few of the recent stories that seem to have the greatest potential impact, at least from my perspective, and that I know I’ll want to follow as they develop further.

Topics covered this time include approval of a new drug to treat advanced breast cancer and a study on post-traumatic stress disorder in cancer survivors.

Continue reading

Genetic Testing for Cancer Risk: My Experience and What I Learned

On genetic testing for inherited mutations that increase risk for cancer.Earlier this year I made the decision to undergo genetic testing to find out whether I’ve inherited any genetic mutation that could increase my risk for a new breast cancer diagnosis or for other cancers.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was only in my mid-thirties. But that was in 1993 and, for a number of reasons, including having no family history of breast or ovarian cancer, I’ve never had genetic testing before. However, I have followed developments in genetic testing for cancer risk with interest over the last several years. And I’ve been struck by how much we’re learning and how much more we seem to know about inherited cancer risk than was the case maybe even five or ten years ago.

Here’s what the experience was like for me and some of the helpful things I learned in the process. Continue reading

Making a Difference: Contributing to Cancer Charities

Making donations to cancer charitiesEvery two years, the American Cancer Society publishes a new report on breast cancer trends. The latest report came out earlier this month.

What does the new report tell us? Are we really making a great deal of progress against breast cancer as some of the media stories are presenting it? Or is progress more incremental in nature?

And how might we respond in a way that could make a difference–during this month of October and during the rest of the year as well?

Continue reading