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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July 11, 2019

Protect Yourself, Your Friends and Family from Fraudulent Genetic Testing

by Lisa Schlager As FORCE celebrates its 20th birthday, I too am commemorating a milestone.  It has been 20 years since I underwent genetic testing and learned that I carry a BRCA1 mutation. Some might look back at that fateful day and feel a sense of dread or sadness. I definitely experienced these and other … + read more

June 27, 2019

Men Can Have Breast Reconstruction After Mastectomy

Men have breast tissue too and any man can develop breast cancer. Men who are interested in breast reconstruction have several options to help restore the natural appearance of their chests.

May 7, 2019

Anti-vaccine Hype is a Threat to People with Cancer

Cancer treatment is challenging enough, without the added threat of a measles outbreak caused by decreased vaccinations.

April 11, 2019

Devin Sidell’s Lady Parts The Film

Devin Sidell is an actress and a previvor who is sharing her story in an upcoming dark comedy feature film called Lady Parts in order to bring more awareness and normalization to BRCA-positive women undergoing preventative surgeries. “I am an actress, an artist, a storyteller. Yet, I had never thought about turning my own story into art … + 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

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

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

April 27, 2018

The Lights of May

Special note: In honor of Mother’s Day 2018, we’re recycling this post that was originally published in 2012. This inspirational post is as relevant as when first written 6 years ago.  by Sue Friedman We were late.  The last hint of twilight faded and although we were close to home, I was nervous.  It was … + read more

March 7, 2018

Because My Daughter Will Never Have To Go Through What I Went Through

by Ellyn Davidson “Your daughter will never go through what you went through.” That simple statement had a profound impact on me. Words I will never forget and words which fuel my passion and energy into an organization that has changed the face of hereditary cancer. I was 36 when I was diagnosed with Stage … + read more

February 15, 2017

Guest Blog: Join FORCEs at our 2017 HBOC Conference!

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

January 12, 2017

FORCE XRAYS Program Empowers Young Breast Cancer Survivors

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

December 31, 2016

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

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

August 19, 2016

XRAYS: One Year of Making Sense of Cancer Headlines!

Over the past year, XRAYS has become a reliable resource for improving our readers’ understanding of breast cancer related news. Since launching on August 25, 2015, XRAYS has made sense of what can often be confusing cancer headlines; empowering cancer survivors, people at high risk for breast cancer, and their families to make better decisions … + read more

May 19, 2016

Updates in Research on Treating Hereditary Cancers

Note: This post which was originally published 08/4/15 was just updated on 05/19/16. In December 2014, the FDA approved the first targeted therapy for people with BRCA mutations. Lynparza, a type of medication known as a PARP inhibitor, was approved for women with a BRCA mutation to treat advanced ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancer that has progressed after … + read more

May 7, 2016

5 Stories We Love of Strong Women & Mothers: Happy Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day 2016 kicks off National Women’s Health Week, which goes from May 8th through May 14th. This is an excellent time to celebrate all of the women who have made a difference in our lives. Although beautiful, Mother’s Day can be an emotional (and sometimes messy) day. Many of us have mothers, grandmothers and … + read more

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