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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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.

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

Book: LAST CUT

October 9, 2019

by Samantha Paige I missed half of my senior year of college for a thyroidectomy and radiation after a sudden thyroid cancer diagnosis weeks after my 21st birthday. I spent the following decade in and out of hospitals for follow-up testing, chronic migraines and PTSD-related anxiety, depression and panic attacks. At some point during that period, … + read more

Including Men in Breast Cancer Trials (Finally!)

September 3, 2020

by Bob Riter When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1996, I was told, “We don’t have much data about breast cancer in men, so we’ll treat you pretty much like we would treat a post-menopausal woman with breast cancer.” I knew it was the best they could do at the time, but it … + read more

National Hereditary Cancer Week

August 27, 2020

National Hereditary Cancer Week is an opportunity to shine the light on hereditary cancer, impart knowledge and save lives. Let’s join together to make a difference! On September 15, 2010, history was made with the unanimous passage of H. Res. 1522, the Congressional resolution declaring the first-ever National Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer (HBOC) Week and National … + read more

I Beat Three Cancers Caused by a BRCA1 Mutation

August 25, 2020

Like many FORCE members, there have been many cases of breast cancer in my family. It was almost expected that women on my father’s side of the family would eventually be affected, and I lost my mother’s only sister to breast cancer as well.

PARP Inhibitor Treatment Is Helping My Pancreatic Cancer

August 24, 2020

by Doug Murray My sister’s diagnosis My sister passed away from breast cancer in 2009. She was the first in our family to undergo genetic testing and learn that she had a BRCA1 mutation. I was not tested at the time of her mutation diagnosis because the data I read suggested there was only a … + read more

Living with Lynch Syndrome

August 24, 2020

I have a strong family history of multiple cancers on both sides of the family. Cancer was our family disease and we all knew it. Yet, I thought if I lived a healthier life than my ancestors, I would not get cancer.

Not Knowing My Family Medical History Led to Genetic Testing and a PALB2 Mutation Diagnosis

August 24, 2020

I knew for decades that I had one relative who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 41. Beyond that, my family medical history was unavailable to me. When I underwent my first screening mammogram at the same age, it was more of an inconvenience than a source of worry. Thankfully, my mammogram was fine.

I Knew There Was an Explanation for the Cancer in My Family, Including My Own Three Diagnoses

August 24, 2020

In 1965, when I was just 14 years old, I lost my mother to breast cancer. Twelve years later, my sister and first cousin succumbed to the same disease. The doctors told me that my family had a “bit of bad luck.” I did not believe them.

I Am a Proud Previvor

August 24, 2020

I was just 22 when I learned I was BRCA positive. My mother had been diagnosed with stage IV metastatic breast cancer and, unfortunately, lost her four-year battle with the disease at the young age of 52.

A New Job, a New City and a New BRCA2 Diagnosis

August 24, 2020

I learned about the possibility of a BRCA2 mutation about one year ago. Growing up, I did not have contact with my biological father, who is from Japan.

Breast Cancer and a CHEK2 Mutation AT 28

August 24, 2020

I didn’t know a risk for hereditary cancer ran in my family until I was diagnosed with breast cancer at 28. Several women on my father’s side of the family had battled breast cancer, including my paternal grandmother.

I Am a Proud Male Previvor

August 24, 2020

In loving memory of Dave Bushman who was a tremendous voice in the hereditary cancer community, we share his story. Dave devoted his life to helping educate people about hereditary cancer, especially sharing information about how men have risks as well.

My BRCA1 Mutation Came From My Spanish Grandmother

August 24, 2020

My story began years ago in Spain where my maternal grandparents lived before immigrating to Argentina where my mother and her three sisters were born.

A Brother and Sister Breast Cancer Story

August 24, 2020

My aunt was a breast cancer survivor. My mother is a breast cancer survivor. My sister, Vicki, is a breast cancer survivor. Vicki was diagnosed in 1995 with the first of four bouts of breast cancer.

I Am BRCA2 Positive. At 31, Who Would Have Guessed?

August 24, 2020

My phone rang when my one and three year old daughters were playing on the floor. We were enjoying our time together at home after a morning at the gym.

How a BRCA2 Diagnosis and Breast Cancer Enabled Me to Help Others

August 24, 2020

Having no family history of breast cancer, I was shocked when my older sister, Trina, was diagnosed with bilateral stage 2 breast cancer two days before leaving for vacation.

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