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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Posts Tagged ‘breast cancer’

February 23, 2017

Post-Reconstruction Thoughts on “Going Flat”

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

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 31, 2017

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

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

January 26, 2017

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

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

January 12, 2017

Update on Hormone Therapy for Previvors

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

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

December 8, 2016

Tips for Sharing the Gift of Knowledge with Relatives

by Sue Friedman Members of our community who have already had genetic testing often ask for advice on how to speak about it to their relatives. Some common barriers to testing that we hear voiced by people are: concern over the cost of testing access to genetics experts family communication challenges With the holidays coming, … + read more

October 25, 2016

Guest Blog: Genetic Variants of Uncertain Significance

by Nancy Ledbetter Early on in my genetics nursing career, I remember explaining the possibility of a variant of uncertain significance (VUS) to a patient, who laughed and said, “Variant of uncertain significance? That sounds like something out of Monty Python!” I had to admit she had a good point. It sounds like a ridiculous … + read more

October 12, 2016

Guest Blog: From Previvor to Survivor

By Angela Schmidt Fishbaugh, M.Ed., CET II I tested positive in 2009 for the BRCA1 deleterious mutated gene. Back then, at the age of 41 I became a previvor. I made the decision to undergo a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy followed by a total hysterectomy. I had both surgeries within eight weeks of one another. At that … + read more

July 28, 2016

Metastatic Hereditary Breast Cancer Treatment Research: BROCADE 3 Study

By Heather Han, MD and Sue Friedman Metastatic Hereditary Breast Cancer Research There are major gaps in research, resources, and support for people with metastatic breast cancer – cancer that has spread beyond the breast and lymph nodes. A promising area of research is focusing on new treatments for hereditary metastatic breast cancer caused by … + read more

July 5, 2016

Cancer Screening Guideline Loopholes and Confusion Jeopardize Coverage of Services: Part II of Access to Care Series

by Lisa Schlager Over 2 million women in the U.S. are at high risk for breast cancer due to family history. Additionally, nearly a million Americans carry an inherited BRCA mutation and a number of other genetic mutations have also been linked to increased risk of breast, ovarian and other cancers. Several organizations develop cancer … + read more

May 27, 2016

Blog: What Do the New Guidelines from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Mean For You?

by Lisa Rezende, PhD People with hereditary cancer face many decisions, such as whether or not to have genetic testing, choosing the best type and frequency of cancer screening, and whether or not to manage cancer risk through surgery. Health care providers look to national guidelines to give their patients advice as they make these … + 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 10, 2016

Experience with Oncology Clinical Trial Participation and Impact on Future Trial Design and Conduct

Note: Last year, TESARO, a pharmaceutical company developing a new PARP inhibitor for treatment of ovarian cancer and metastatic breast cancer, asked FORCE to help recruit previous clinical trial participants to join focus groups across the U.S. TESARO wanted to understand the patient experience to build clinical trials that are more responsive to patient needs. We … + read more

April 25, 2016

Receive Personalized Resources and Support Quickly and Easily Through FORCE’s New Peer Navigation Program

by Wendy Demming, FORCE Peer Navigator Volunteer I wanted to be a Peer Navigator because it is important for me to help others who are going through an overwhelming diagnosis. I remember being desperate for credible information, and wanting to talk to others who had been in a similar situation. I was so grateful when … + read more

Connect with others.

Call our Helpline

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

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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.

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