FORCE Blog

This blog will cover topics of interest that affect our community. Unless otherwise stated, the blog articles will be written by Sue Friedman, Executive Director of FORCE.

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Improving Lives through Education—By Way of Science Writing

July 29, 2020

Vabren Watts, PhD (new science writer for FORCE) Growing up in a family of educators—ranging from preschool teachers to college presidents—I knew that being an educator was not my calling. Well, that was until I discovered the impact of science writing. Life experiences have labeled me as both a left-brained/right-brained kind of person. In college, … + read more

Advocacy Through Writing and Research

July 9, 2020

Bryna Siegel Finer, PhD As an academic researcher, I am currently recruiting survey and interview participants for two new studies. The first looks at how patient education materials describing chemotherapy can better equip patients to understand how their bodies might be different after chemo. I invite you to take the survey and tell us what … + read more

How to Prepare for a Mastectomy Amid COVID and Other Life Events

July 8, 2020

by Jentry Wheaton, DNP, FNP-C, APRN, previvor and FORCE volunteer I made the decision to have a preventive bilateral mastectomy to decrease my chances of developing breast cancer. Making the decision to remove your breasts is difficult. Add a global pandemic, travel restrictions, work, family, etc. and it seems overwhelming. I want to share what … + read more

Breaking Breast Cancer Color Barriers and Building Bridges

June 24, 2020

in May 2019, on our one-year Founders’ Day, we introduced the first dynamic, searchable directory for women of color who are affected by breast cancer.

Clinical Trials are Essential for Improving Healthcare

May 21, 2020

by Kelly Owens, PhD, FORCE’s Director of Research and Education Clinical trials are an essential process for making progress in health care treatment. This essential research produces new and better methods of preventing, detecting and treating disease. Clinical trials are a type of research that tests whether a new procedure or drug works in the … + read more

Clinical Trials Helped Save My Life

May 20, 2020

by Susan Feinberg People are often surprised when I say I feel lucky. About one in 500 Americans inherit a BRCA gene mutation, which greatly increases a person’s chances of developing breast and ovarian cancer – and I’m one of them. I made the discovery shortly after turning 50, when I was diagnosed with breast … + read more

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, stop and take a breath

May 11, 2020

by Ilana Beigel, MA, CCC-SLP, RYT, yoga educator and life coach, Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health in Massachusetts Watch Ilana’s recorded webinar, “Yoga and Mindfulness for Calm, Connection and Compassion During COVID-19.” Now more than ever, you might find yourself experiencing more anxiety, more worry and more stress. The breath is a portable self-care … + read more

A Survivor’s Insight: There is Always a Silver Lining

April 24, 2020

by Elaine Kennedy, member of FORCE’s Board of Directors The global Covid-19 pandemic has us waiting anxiously for the next official update. All plans, big and small, are on hold. Our lives and everything we want to do seems to be in the hands of doctors and scientists. The situation is continuously described as unprecedented.  … + read more

National Minority Cancer Awareness Month: Is the Cancer in Your Family Hereditary?

April 22, 2020

Hereditary cancers run in families. They are caused by a gene mutation that can be passed down from fathers and mothers to their sons and daughters. Hereditary cancers can occur in people of all races, ethnicities and walks of life. Everyone should ask themselves whether the cancer in their family may be hereditary. Which cancers … + read more

COVID-19 Pandemic and Breast Cancer Surgery

April 8, 2020

No one takes lightly the impact of delaying surgery – both from the standpoint of treating the cancer as well as the added psychological stress on the patient and their family. However, we are dealing with a novel disease and the full impact, devastating already, has yet to be seen.

Dealing with an Extra Helping of Stress

March 31, 2020

“Driving into the skid means accepting the anxiety you’re feeling for what it is and experiencing the fluttery feeling in your stomach,” Hurley said

Learning I Had Lynch Syndrome Helped Save My Life

March 4, 2020

After five years with no evidence of disease (NED), Wenora Johnson’s colon cancer returned and her oncologist recommended genetic testing. She tested positive for Lynch syndrome, an inherited syndrome associated with a genetic predisposition to different types of cancer. Today, Wenora is a three-time cancer survivor, advocate and FORCE volunteer. With Lynch syndrome Awareness Day … + read more

New Medicare Genetic Testing Policy: What Does It Mean to Me?

February 19, 2020

Recently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released their final National Coverage Determination (NCD) on a type of genetic testing called next-generation sequencing (NGS), which enables laboratories to examine multiple genes at once. The policy paves the way for national coverage of tumor biomarker testing and multigene panel testing for hereditary cancer in specific … + read more

FORCE Supports Broader Access to Genetic Counseling

January 28, 2020

by Lisa Schlager Genetic testing is an increasingly important and complex service that can inform medical decisions and improve health outcomes. National standard-of-care guidelines recommend genetic counseling with a qualified expert before and after genetic testing. FORCE agrees that talking to a healthcare professional who has expertise in cancer genetics before and after genetic testing … + read more

New PARP Inhibitor Approval for Pancreatic Cancer

January 6, 2020

On December 27th, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved olaparib (Lynparza) – a type of targeted therapy known as a PARP inhibitor—for treatment of metastatic pancreatic cancer in people with a BRCA mutation.

Connect with others.

Call our Helpline

Our helpline offers peer support for people concerned about hereditary cancer. All calls are confidential. Call any time.

Join a Local Group

FORCE has outreach groups throughout the United States and in Essex, United Kingdom that meet periodically to offer peer support, and share resources.

FORCE:Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered