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Think Pink And Dont Ingnore The Ribbon!!


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Cancer strikes families at such an alarming rate these days. It doesn't care if you are young, old, in great shape, over weight, rich, or poor. It strikes when no one is looking.

 

It came into my family and took two members. Two of my great aunts died of breast cancer. They both had double mastectomies and both passed away. Granted we have come along way in cancer research then when they were diagnosed. However, if they would have caught it in the early stages they might have had a chance to survive.

 

 

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Did you know that breast cancer is the most common cancer that strikes women?

 

 

Chance of developing invasive breast cancer at some point in a woman’s life is 1 in 8.

 

 

In 2006

40,970 women and 460 men will die of breast cancer.

 

 

Yes, even men develop breast cancer. 1720 cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in men.

 

 

Each month please do a self examination. If you feel anything it may just be a swollen gland, have it checked out. The payoff is the peace of mind that it’s not cancer. I can’t stress enough how important this is for both women and men.

 

 

So think pink this month and beyond!!!

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Good post!

 

link removed uses advertising to pay for free mammograms. Last year, that site helped pay for over 2,500 mammograms for women who couldn't otherwise afford them. All you have to do is click!

 

Also, if there's a Race for the Cure in your area, donate a little money to someone who is participating. Anything you give helps!

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My mother first found out she had breast cancer at the age of 33.

 

She eventually passed away at the age of 51, 2 years ago, August 25, 2004.

 

The cancer started in her breast, showed back up on other breast, she ended up with cancer showing up all over her body. She kept fighting.

 

Finally in the end, her organs shut down. Cancer is not fair.

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WorkNProgress-- thanks so much for posting this, we made a sticky to encourage everyone to donate to cancer funds and remind them of this terrible disease that can affect EVERY woman.

 

Southerngirl-- I am so sorry to hear about your mom. It is such a difficult battle, so much uncertainty. It's so unfair.

 

Ilse

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My mom's friend Terri is a breast cancer survivor. She does the Breast Cancer Walk in Boston every year with her friends who are also survivors. Last year they lost a friend, and they brought a picture of her when they walked.

 

This week I cared for a patient who has metastatic breast cancer, it went to her spine. She will die from it- but they are trying to keep her comfortable until then.

 

Many of you know RayKay, who posts on this site, and the fact that her mother is going through breast cancer right now too. Here is her story:

 

 

 

I cannot stress, as WNP said, how important it is to do your monthly breast check. Some of the women I've cared for with breast cancer did not- and it was not detected until it had spread. Others did, and their prognosis is better- because it was caught early. While there is no guarantee, statistics show that monthly checks greatly improve your chances of finding it early.

 

If you are over 40- you should be getting an annual mammogram as well as your monthly checks. Make sure you do your monthly exam at the same time every month (hormonally, your breasts do change a little bit each month), and report ANY changes, lumps, bumps, sores, discharge from the nipple...to your doctor right away. It only takes a few minutes, and it could save your life. Spread the news to your friends too. This is ESPECIALLY important to those who have known cases of breast cancer in their family- there is a gene that can be passed on that makes you more susceptible to breast cancer.

 

 

Thanks WNP for posting this thread!

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If you are unsure how to do an breast exam properly, Planned Parenthood gives a free class session when they do an annual

 

link removed

 

And they have a sample breast (made of silicon) there so you can feel what you are looking for.

 

It's hard to tell especially when you are young as during your period, the breasts can feel fibrous.

 

What a great cause!!!

 

Thanks WNP for posting that.

 

Hugs, Rose

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Thanks for posting this, WIP. I agree that we should raise awareness about an illness that affects so many women. I also think we should question why it does: what is causing it? The rates of cancer have risen drastically in the last and current centuries. What's going on here???

 

Also, I hate to inject a note of cynicism in this valuable thread, but there is a question that has refused to go away for me for a couple of years now:

 

With all the money that has been raised in the "Race for the Cure" and countless other endeavors, just how far have we come in actually finding a cure? Is any of this money going towards uninsured women with breast cancer, so they can get treatment?

 

They've raised billions of dollars. It's practically an industry, at this point, that employs tens of thousands of people, if not more. If they actually found a cure, there would be no more industry, because no more money is coming in.

 

Am I wrong for having these questions? I hate to be a curmudgeon, but at the same time, I like to see efforts actually accomplishing what countless volunteers are giving their time and money to accomplish. Not to support a cottage industry.

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I agree Scout. I think this goes hand in hand with all organizations raising funds.

 

I raised over $5000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. As I remember they said that as a whole the smallest percentage (can't remember the # off hand) of funds raised went to overhead expenses. I would hope that the people in the upper managment roles take their fiduciary responsibilty seriously.

 

 

Scout I don't think your a curmudgeon, you are bringing up very valid points.

 

I believe that awareness is key with anything.

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Even if most of their money goes to research, again, I'd still be curious as to how far along that research has led to an actual cure. You can do research for years and years....remember, that's how lots of scientists make their living!

 

But thanks for being understanding of my concerns. Your house is coming along quite nicely, by the way!

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Is any of this money going towards uninsured women with breast cancer, so they can get treatment?

 

Yes, Medi-caid will pay for the treatment of patients who fall into the designated poverty level and their specified requirements.

 

Many groups of people are covered by Medicaid. Even within these groups, though, certain requirements must be met. These may include your age, whether you are pregnant, disabled, blind, or aged; your income and resources (like bank accounts, real property, or other items that can be sold for cash); and whether you are a U.S. citizen or a lawfully admitted immigrant. The rules for counting your income and resources vary from state to state and from group to group. There are special rules for those who live in nursing homes and for disabled children living at home.

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just how far have we come in actually finding a cure?

 

There is a great deal of research going on in this area.

 

My friend does cancer research and he has found some interesting discoveries, the problem lies in how long it takes for approval to use these in human subjects. The delay and requirements are very fierce.

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My household does not qualify for medicaid or food stamps, etc....

 

We make too much money yet barely get by. Sad but fact is MOST people in the united states work work work everyday and do not draw government funding to live. Alot of those people do not have health insurance policies through work, or if they are available they cost too much money.

 

In my case, we do have health insurance, a very good policy in fact. But, we have no dental insurance. Not to hijack the thread but not everyone uninsured will find they qualify for medicaid.

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Not to hijack the thread but not everyone uninsured will find they qualify for medicaid.

 

Yeah, I don't mean to hijack the thread, either, with my questions. It's just we're talking about raising awareness of breast cancer, so I feel the issue of what they're doing with the money to do so is important.

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Wow, read this article, I was shocked!

 

link removed

 

Yet organizations like the American Cancer Society and the Susan G. Komen Foundation routinely fail to address these issues. As it turns out, both groups have connections with numerous corporations in the chemical, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries, many of which have an enormous financial stake in breast cancer. Good intentions aside, it is far more profitable for these companies to detect and treat breast cancer than to prevent it, leading to an enormous conflict of interest between their corporate well being and their charitable public persona.

 

The primary corporate sponsor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month is AstraZeneca, which makes the popular cancer drug Tamoxifen. Interestingly, Tamoxifen can also cause cancer and until recently, AstraZeneca also made a variety of other cancer-causing chemicals.
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Yeah its an interesting point. I mean if they 'find a cure' they are out of business. I saw a candle for sale in the store the other night while grocery shopping. it was on sale for 19.95 but I SWEAR the value couldnt have been more than a 8.99 candle if you follow me... it says that so much percent of proceeds goes to breast cancer research.

 

Thats all fine and good but to me knowing my dad and mom and all the money that was paid out even though she had insurance... Where was help for our family? No where to be found because we werent in that poverty level. In fact, 2 years later he is still paying off her medical bills. That 20 percent copay for treatment (normal in most insurance policies) can really add up.

 

I would also love to know if any of the money we donate to something like this will actually go to helping out the patients themselves and their families. Or another thing what about those that die from this? What about help for funeral costs and burials... I know that hers cost the family some 15,000 dollars, and that was just a minimum.

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Rose2Summer, thanks for sharing that article. Again, it's an industry. And I'm not surprised to see it's one that is funded, at least in part, by the big pharmaceuticals.

 

And Southerngirl, thanks for sharing those points.

 

Southerngirl, I know what you mean about the candle. I received a glossy magazine in the mail about "National Breast Cancer Month." I mean, this was a very well-produced publication. I started to think about all the people it employed just to send it out...writers, graphic designers, printing companies...and that's just for ONE product.

 

I think if more volunteers and advocates of breast cancer awareness and research started asking these questions, we'd actually get closer to a cure.

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link removed

 

Here is a link to the Susan G. Komen 2004-2005 Final Audit. It might give you insight into where their money is going.

 

I think its great to have this conversation. The only way to make strides ahead is to make your voice heard. This is the whole point of the thread.

 

P.S. Thanks Scout. The house is coming along quite well. i have a new picture to post soon.

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I think its great to have this conversation. The only way to make strides ahead is to make your voice heard. This is the whole point of the thread.

 

Agreed. I really want to see a cure for breast cancer happen. That's why I believe raising awareness for the current process behind this needs to be put in a glaring spotlight - so that the opportunists will be cut out of the picture and we can actually find one.

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I found a lump a few months ago and went straight to my doctor. At first he thought it may be a swollen duct so he gave me 2 weeks of antibiotics. When I returned he referred me to a consultant at a hospital. He did a mammogram, ultrasound and a biopsy. When I went for the results I saw a different consultant. He wasn't sure if the first consultant had missed the lump completely when the biopsy was done because the results were negative. He examined me himself and felt the lump. I now have to wait 3 months to see the consultant again before he will discharge me.

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Well, as some of you know, breast cancer has touched my family greatly. My maternal grandmothers, and great grandmothers, and now my mother have all battled the disease. Before my mum, all of them also died of it.

 

My mum is still fighting it, and she does so everyday. Despite vigilant and routine testing, it was undiagnosed until Stage III as it is a very rare form (a more genetic form) that can be difficult to detect by normal procedures. She was diagnosed in December, had 8 rounds of chemo, then a double mastectomy, 4 more rounds of chemo and is now in radiation and on tamoxifen.

 

If you catch it early, you have more than a 90% survival rate....that would be in about Stage 1 or even earlier (DCIS/LCIS). Stage III is quite a bit less but not impossible anymore, even Stage 4 (where is has spread) is now treated more as a chronic disease than a death sentence as it used to be....I have met many women whom were diagnosed with Stage 4....years after diagnosis even.

 

On the weekend we as a Family & Friends group did the Run for the Cure, she was not permitted by her oncologist to run it, so she walked (quickly!) instead...

 

It was inspiring to see 8,000 people gather to walk or run, many of them wearing pink survivor shirts....I ran it, then ran around again to catch up with my mum, and it was really quite amazing to see so many there!

 

Some of the money does go directly to searching for the cure, but it also has to be remembered that searching for the cure is also about raising awareness, as before a cure there must be awareness, need and...prevention as well as early detection. So, many costs do to go administration, but I see that as part of the functioning machine. Our health care system also works differently up here though too...

 

There was a woman here recently whom got a lot of coverage as she had to leave work to battle her cancer, and had not worked long enough to be covered under the disability though her employer paid her anyway for it. My mum CHOSE to work for her own sanity ...she has that flexibility though as she is "boss" there and can work from home as well...fortunately she was very supported.

 

I am extremely prepared for the reality that I will in 10 or 15 years myself be going through this, hopefully it will be detected early, but my high family risk have made me very aware- while I am very careful about exams, about being healthy, limiting hormones in my diet...you cannot remove all risk. But, I have seen how great the treatment has come in 15 years since my grandmother died from it, and I can only see it going forward....for all cancers, not just breast cancer.

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Hi, WNP, Glad you brought this up and hopefully it will help to inform many people about breast cancer.

 

I always schedule my yearly mammogram for the month of October. I usually have it done the same week as my birthday , and that helps me to not forget it is time to get it done.

 

I myself had a breast issue about a year and half ago. Went through the diagnostic mammogram , ultrasound, antibiotics and so forth, due to a duct inflammation. I had a lot of breast pain/soreness/tenderness and a small amount of discharge from the nipple. There was never a lump felt by myself or the doctor. They also did a biopsy of the ducts just to rule out anything possibly missed by the "mammo", which was negative.

 

Since April of 2005 I have had three mammograms and they all prove to be negative.

 

It is certainly a scary thing to experience. I was on of the lucky ones to find that mine was not cancer.

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My Nana has been battling cancer for a good four or five years now.

 

Whether you've witnessed the tragic effect cancer can have on a personal level or not, nobody can escape the fact that its out there - EVERYWHERE.

 

Our school do sponsored runs, Dress Pink and fancy dress every year and its always nice to feel like we're doing something.

 

That should be mandatory.

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