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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Archives

Archive for 2018

November 28, 2018

You Don’t Need a Family History of Cancer to Benefit from Genetic Testing

by Sue Friedman Many people mistakenly believe that genetic testing for inherited mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2, Lynch Syndrome, and other genes is only appropriate for people with many cases of cancer in their family. National guidelines—based on the latest research—state otherwise. There are situations where a single case of cancer in a family is enough … + read more

November 27, 2018

Where’s FORCE? July – October

by Lisa Schlager This issue of “Where’s FORCE” features an overview of the many places FORCE staff and volunteers have been in the recent months. July and August NRG Oncology is a nonprofit research organization formed to conduct oncologic clinical research and to broadly disseminate study results for informing clinical decision making and healthcare policy. … + read more

November 26, 2018

I am Thankful for YOU This Holiday Season

By Marcy Rubic, VP of Leadership Gifts What are you thankful for this season?  At FORCE, we are thankful for our generous supporters. Because of YOUR dedication and support, FORCE helps tens of thousands of families affected by hereditary cancer each year and makes lifesaving resources available to so many more. Every person who is … + read more

November 9, 2018

Updates to the Practice Guidelines for Hereditary Cancer

by Piri Welcsh The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) is a nonprofit network of 27 leading cancer centers. The NCCN publishes evidence-based guidelines for oncology. These guidelines help to set the standard of care. Guidelines are updated annually as new research is published.  Below we highlight several recent updates, which are important to the hereditary … + read more

November 3, 2018

XRAYS Blog: Sharsheret Webinar Helps People Make Sense of Breaking News in Breast and Ovarian Cancer

by Elaine Gottesman Sharsheret is one of the partner organization for FORCE’s XRAYS Program. Sharsheret’s webinar, “Breaking News In Breast And Ovarian Cancer And What Should I Make Of It?” recapped some of the key takeaways from the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology’s Annual Meeting. Featuring Dr. Deanna Attai, of UCLA Health Burbank Breast … + read more

October 29, 2018

PARP Inhibitors Take Center Stage

by Piri Welcsh, PhD “PARP inhibitor therapy, I think it’s fair to say, very likely would not be part of our armamentarium now had it not been for FORCE.” These were the words of Mary-Claire King, PhD as she accepted her 2018 FORCE Spirit of Empowerment award.  “Armamentarium,” I confess, was a word I had … + read more

September 28, 2018

Addressing Previvors’ Needs for Affordable Access to Care

by Lisa Schlager (Note: Adapted from an article in the September 2018 issue of The Oncology Nurse) In 2010, FORCE spearheaded passage of a Congressional resolution declaring the first-ever National Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer Week and National Previvor Day. This year, Previvor Day is October 3rd. Over the past 8 years, the number of people … + read more

September 21, 2018

Headline Hype: Media Report on BRCA1 Variant Research Plays on Fears

by Piri Welcsh, PhD Most people who have genetic testing for BRCA1, BRCA2 or other genes associated with cancer risk receive either a positive or a negative test result. A positive genetic test result indicates that a change called a mutation was found in a gene which is associated with increased cancer risk. A negative genetic test … + read more

September 12, 2018

Starting a Conversation about My Family Health History

by Shannon Pulaski Ten days into my journey into parenthood, my own mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.  It shook my family’s entire world.  And when the earthquake settled, we realized we were only just beginning to understand our new reality.  We were fortunate that her doctor knew to test her for the BRCA gene.  … + read more

September 11, 2018

We All Love a Good Book or Movie

Some books and movies make us think.  Some make us laugh or cry. Some are educational and others are just plain fun.  And, then some do all of the above.  Below is a list of personal memoirs, self-help and reference books created to share information and stories of those who have experienced hereditary cancer. You … + read more

August 27, 2018

FORCE Co-Authors Paper on Engaging Patient Advocates in Research

by Lisa Schlager A year ago, I wrote a blog titled “Working with Industry to Increase Patient Engagement in Drug Development.”  In it, I shared that FORCE is a member of Bayer Pharmaceutical’s 5-member Patient Advocacy Advisory Council (PAAC), a novel partnership between this leading drug developer and the patient advocate community. From late 2016 … + read more

August 16, 2018

Book Blog: The Bucket List

by Georgia Clark Hi everyone, My name’s Georgia Clark, and I’m the author of The Bucket List, a new novel from Simon & Schuster. Twenty-five-old Lacey Whitman is blindsided when she’s diagnosed with the BCRA1 gene mutation: the “breast cancer” gene. Her high hereditary risk forces a decision: increased surveillance or the more radical step … + read more

July 11, 2018

Where’s FORCE? May and June

by Lisa Schlager “Where’s FORCE” features an overview of the many places our staff and volunteers have been and the many ways we have spoken out for the community in the past couple of months. May “Financial Toxicity” is a term used to describe the impact of health care costs on patients and their families. … + read more

June 17, 2018

Solving for Y: Reaching Men About Genetic Testing for Hereditary Breast, Ovarian, Pancreatic, Prostate And Related Cancers (HBOC)

by Sue Friedman Half of all people with an inherited BRCA, ATM, CHEK2, PALB2 or other mutation associated with HBOC are men. Nevertheless, the majority of awareness, research, and resources have focused on genetic testing in women. A recent article in JAMA highlights this disparity in BRCA testing between men and women. Emerging information on … + read more

June 14, 2018

XRAYS Blog: Me and My MSH6 Mutation: Ever Searching for Answers

by Aya It all started with Mother’s histopathology report on her partially resected small bowel. She had small bowel cancer. With my middle name being “I-want-to-know-more,” I asked for a pathology report after a post-op consultation with her surgeon where future management was discussed.  When I read the report at home, I noticed an aspect … + read more

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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