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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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Reflections on the March for Science

April 23, 2017

by Piri Welcsh, PhD Scientists rarely, if ever, come together across disciplines to achieve a common goal. That is unfortunate, as I believe most scientists share a common passion, and deep down, we know we can accomplish so much more collaboratively. I think that most would agree that what motivates us to conduct scientific research … + read more

Introducing Myself to the FORCE Community

April 10, 2017

by Piri Welcsh, PhD I am honored to begin a new phase of my career as FORCE’s Vice President of Education. I’d like to introduce myself by telling you a bit of a long story. I will tell this over time in several parts. The story is that of the “The Race” to Clone BRCA1. … + read more

Genetic Testing Results In An Early Stage Ovarian Cancer Diagnosis

March 30, 2017

After discovering that her mother carried the BRCA1 mutation, Ilana Feuchter of Vienna, Virginia decided to get tested as well, a decision that would ultimately lead to her diagnosis of Stage 2 ovarian cancer in November of 2013. Ilana’s journey began in the Spring of 2013 after her mother was diagnosed with a cancer of … + read more

SOLO3: A Clinical Trial Comparing the PARP Inhibitor, Olaparib to Standard Chemotherapy for Platinum-Sensitive Relapsed Ovarian Cancer

March 28, 2017

by Jordan Dietrich  SOLO3 SOLO3 is an exciting phase III ovarian cancer clinical trial that studies the effectiveness and safety of the PARP inhibitor Olaparib (Lynparza) compared to single-agent standard chemotherapy in women with platinum-sensitive relapsed ovarian cancer with germline BRCA1/2 mutations. The trial is designed to confirm the benefit of Olaparib in this subset of … + read more

Making Postmastectomy Decisions: The Right Input is Critical

March 1, 2017

Note: This is part 3 of a 3-part series related to our recent XRAYS review on Roni Caryn Rabin’s New York Times piece, “‘Going Flat’ After Breast Cancer.” In part 1 of the series, FORCE volunteer, Robin Karlin discusses her decisions after mastectomy, and her feelings post-reconstruction. In part 2, Sue Friedman talks about the affect of … + read more

After Mastectomy: Go Flat or Reconstruct

February 27, 2017

Note: This is part 2 of a 3-part series related to our recent XRAYS review on Roni Caryn Rabin’s New York Times piece, “‘Going Flat’ After Breast Cancer.” FORCE volunteer, Robin Karlin discusses her decisions after mastectomy in part 1 of the series. by Sue Friedman In 1997, I was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 33. … + read more

Post-Reconstruction Thoughts on “Going Flat”

February 23, 2017

Note: This is part 1 of a 3-part series related to our recent XRAYS review on Roni Caryn Rabin’s New York Times piece “‘Going Flat’ After Breast Cancer.” by Robin Karlin Roni Caryn Rabin’s New York Times piece, “‘Going Flat’ After Breast Cancer,” brings much-needed awareness to the option of skipping reconstruction after mastectomies for breast … + read more

Guest Blog: Join FORCEs at our 2017 HBOC Conference!

February 15, 2017

by guest blogger, Jane E. Herman When I boarded the flight for my first trip to Orlando in June 2011, my goal was not to hug Mickey Mouse or visit Cinderella’s Castle. Rather, my destination was the sixth annual Joining FORCEs Conference. Not knowing anyone who would be in attendance, I was – not unexpectedly … + read more

MEDIOLA: A Clinical Trial Combining a PARP Inhibitor with an Immunotherapy Drug

January 31, 2017

By Ding Wang, MD and Catherine Jenovai Immune system and cancer Every day our bodies are exposed to various injuries that may damage our cells. The damaged cells with certain types of genetic defects are tagged as abnormal and removed by our immune system. If something goes wrong and the cells are not removed by … + read more

Flawed Research and Reporting on the “Angelina Effect” Could Threaten Access to HBOC Care

January 26, 2017

by Lisa Schlager, Lisa Rezende, PhD and Sue Friedman “Angeline Effect” Angelina Jolie’s May 2013 New York Times editorial “My Medical Choice,” which detailed her decision to have a double mastectomy because she carries a BRCA1 mutation brought unprecedented attention to hereditary cancer and BRCA genetic testing. This “Angelina Effect” created an avalanche of public … + read more

My Experience with Ovarian Cancer: Surprise, Shock, Genetic Testing and Survival by Corinne Florin

January 19, 2017

When I got my diagnosis of stage IIIa, grade 3, clear cell ovarian cancer, it was such a shock that not a lot of information sunk in. I may or may not have discussed genetic testing but I just don’t remember.  I was aware that genetic testing existed, but during my recovery and subsequent treatment … + read more

Update on Hormone Therapy for Previvors

January 12, 2017

by Alexandria Groves and Lisa Rezende, PhD National guidelines recommend that women with mutations in BRCA have risk-reducing removal of their ovaries and tubes, (also known as salpingo-oophorectomy or RRSO) either between the ages of 35-40 or after they are done having children. RRSO greatly reduces the risk of ovarian, fallopian tube, and peritoneal cancer, … + read more

FORCE XRAYS Program Empowers Young Breast Cancer Survivors

January 12, 2017

Unconfuse the News with the FORCE XRAYS Program When Kimberly Jackson received a breast cancer diagnosis at the age of 32 while breastfeeding her 6-month old daughter and caring for her 3-½ year old daughter, she fell into shock. In an attempt to understand more about her diagnosis and potential treatments, she began to sort … + read more

FORCE Collaborates on Genetics Toolkit for Health Care Providers to Help Improve Patient Care

January 5, 2017

by Alexandria Groves In October The Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) announced the release of the SGO Genetics Toolkit to provide critical and important information to health professionals, patients and their families, and anyone who wants a deeper understanding of gynecologic cancers and genetics. The Toolkit is the result of a collaboration between experts from … + read more

Happy New Year HBOC Community! Happy 18th Birthday, FORCE!

December 31, 2016

Note: This post, which originally was published on 1/1/15 has been updated and reposted on 12/31/16. New Year’s is always a nostalgic time for me. Tonight at just a few seconds after the stroke of midnight, FORCE and the community we have built will turn 18! In 1999, I founded FORCE, not because I made … + read more

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