BC Interactive

Should You Remove Your Healthy Breast? Study Finds Minimal Benefit

A hot topic among members of my online breast cancer support groups is whether to also remove the healthy breast when having a mastectomy. A double mastectomy can help with symmetry and balance. But many of my friends view the procedure as a way to prevent cancer from spreading to the other side, or to prevent a new cancer.

Statistically, the risk of developing cancer in the second breast is very low for most women, as low as one per cent. Yet between 1998 and 2011, the rate of bilateral surgery increased from around 2 percent among all women undergoing mastectomy to 11 percent.

How Long Until Considered Breast Cancer Free

Question: How long must a woman survive after breast cancer to be considered cancer-free or cured?

Answer: According to the National Cancer Institute, the five-year survival rate for non-metastatic breast cancer (breast cancer that has not spread beyond the breast) is 80%. Newspapers and television usually translate that to, “If you’ve survived for five years, you’re cancer-free.”

This is a bit misleading. It’s true that during the first five years, the risk of recurrence is highest. But breast cancer can recur even after five years. The important point to know is that the more time passes,

Can Wearing a Bra all the Time Cause Cancer?

Question: Can you get breast cancer from things you do to your breasts, like wearing a bra all the time, or when your partner caresses them?

Answer: No, you cannot get breast cancer from these things. What you wear and how your breasts are touched do not affect your risk for breast cancer.

But if you feel uncomfortable with the way your partner handles your breasts, you need to share that with him or her. It’s important for you to be intimate in ways that feel good for you

9 Reasons To Consider Breast Cancer Genetic Testing

  1. You have blood relatives (grandmothers, mother, sisters, aunts) on either your mother’s or father’s side of the family who had breast cancer diagnosed before age 50
  2. There is both breast and ovarian cancer in your family, particularly in a single individual.
  3. You have a relative(s) with triple-negative breast cancer.
  4. There are other cancers in your family in addition to breast, such as prostate, melanoma, pancreatic, colon, and thyroid cancers.
  5. Women in your family have had cancer in both breasts.
  6. You are of Ashkenazi Jewish (Eastern European) heritage.
  7. You are African American and have been diagnosed with breast cancer at age 35 or younger.

Stages Of Fear After Diagnosis

Most people go through several stages of fear when they are first diagnosed. The stages, and the order in which they happen, are very similar in most people:

  • You just can’t believe what you’ve heard and completely deny it.
  • You get angry at the doctor who told you and anyone else, such as a lab technician or nurse, who read a result to you.
  • You appeal to a higher power and ask over and over, “Why did this happen to me?” or “What did I do to deserve this?”
  • You feel resigned,

Size of the Breast Cancer

Size indicates how large across the tumor is at its widest point. Doctors measure cancer in millimeters (1 mm = .04 inch) or centimeters (1 cm = .4 inch). Size is used to help determine the stage of the breast cancer.

Size doesn’t tell the whole story, though. All of the cancer’s characteristics are important. A small cancer can be aggressive while a larger cancer is not — or it could be the other way around.

Expert Quote

“Size matters when it comes to breast cancer, but size is only one of the personality features on the list.

Mom With Breast Cancer: 9 Ways to Deal

As a mother, battling breast cancer is an overwhelming experience. Your very worst fear – deserting your children – becomes an all-too-real possibility. Here’s some practical advice for moms (with kids of all ages) trying to stay on an even emotional keel during breast cancer treatment – and beyond

Breast cancer is not your fault
Breast cancer’s not your fault

You didn’t bring this on yourself and, just as importantly, your children. The six-packs you downed as a teen, the brief interlude of smoking, the less-than-healthy diet – don’t beat yourself up.

10 Ways To Make Sure You Have The Right Oncologist

Once you have cancer, you’ll also have an oncologist – a cancer doctor. You may very well be seeing this doctor for the rest of your life. How do you know if this doctor is your perfect match – or half of a relationship destined to fail? 

  • 1. You feel comfortable talking about your deepest feelings.

    Cancer isn’t just a physical disease; it’s very emotional. As you go through treatment, making life-or-death decisions all along the way, it’s critical to be able to say what’s in your heart.

Brief History Of Breast Cancer: How It All Started

Breast cancer diagnostics, treatment and prevention has come a long way since its humble beginnings in ancient Egypt. Check out the history of this common and, at least to early doctors, extremely puzzling disease.

Breast cancer: now and then
Breast cancer: now and then

Breast cancer is among the most well-known and researched cancers in the medical world today. A diagnosis of breast cancer in 2012, while certainly terrifying, is no long the death sentence it was several years ago. In fact, women who detect breast cancer early in its development have a very good chance of a cancer-free future.

All About Breast Cancer Screening

Breast screening aims to find breast cancers early. It uses an X-ray test called a mammogram that can spot cancers when they are too small to see or feel.

Breast screening does, however, have some risks you should be aware of (see below).

As the likelihood of getting breast cancer increases with age, all women who are aged 50-70 and registered with a GP are automatically invited for breast cancer screening every three years.

In the meantime, if you are worried about breast cancer symptoms, such as a lump or area of thickened tissue in a breast,