Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Breast Cancer Survivors Tweet About Sex Issues Tuesday 4/25

  Breast Cancer Answers ( http://www.breastcanceranswers.com ), the first ever social media show, is hosting a LIVE Twitter discussion, or "TweetUp," on April 25, 2012 at 6 p.m PDT/9 p.m. EDT. Attendees will have a chance to ask questions to a sexual health medical expert and network with other breast cancer patients, survivors, and advocates.

Wednesday's TweetUp discussion will feature Dr. Michael Krychman, who will lead the discussion on, "Breaking the Conspiracy of Sexual Silence After Breast Cancer: How can I effectively discuss my sexual concerns with my partner & health care provider?"
"Many of my patients are so relieved to know that their breast cancer sexual side effects are common and often easily resolved," said Michael Krychman, MD, clinical sexual counselor and board certified obstetrician and gynecologist . "It's very rewarding to team up with BreastCancerAnswers.com to help women regain wellness and enjoyment of life's many pleasures."
Attendees of the TweetUp are encouraged to ask questions for themselves and other women all over the world who may be silently suffering from the sexual side effects of breast cancer. Dr. Krychman and Breast Cancer Answers have created a downloadable PDF that summarizes the topic and can be shared with patients in need.
"It's very common for breast cancer patients to feel like their sexual health concerns are being overlooked or swept under the rug," said Jay K. Harness, MD, FACS, the medical director for Breast Cancer Answers and a past president of The American Society of Breast Surgeons. "That's why it was vital for us to help women effectively communicate their sexual concerns with their health care provider and partner."
To access the TweetUp, search the hashtag #BCATU on Twitter or visit the official BreastCancerAnswers.com Twitter page at http://twitter.com/ #!/BreastCancerDr. Event attendees will have a chance to have their questions answered and win a $50.00 iTunes gift card.
Breast Cancer Answers, the first ever social media show, enables breast cancer patients across the dominant eight social networks to submit their questions and receive a video response back from medical experts. Each time a patient submits a new question, they receive an email with a video answering their question. These short Q & A responses, or episodes, are then published every week day across the Internet and into the show's growing Q & A video library. Patient questions can also be submitted at http://www.breastcanceranswers.com .
Michael Krychman, MD, is the Executive Director at The Southern California Center for Sexual Health and Survivorship, Newport Beach CA. As a board certified obstetrician and gynecologist, clinical sexual counselor and author, Dr. Krychman has devoted his career to helping patients and their partners overcome sexual health challenges and experience a higher quality of physical intimacy. He is also a specialist in survivorship medicine and provides life coaching and care plans to optimize the health and wellness of patients with chronic diseases or cancer. Learn more about Dr. Krychman by visiting http://www.thesexualhealthcenter.com .

Monday, April 23, 2012

Lucky Hubby?

I don't post a whole lot about my relationship with my husband, but we had kind of a fight about something sort of breast cancer related.

We were watching a story about a car that hit some people on a street in New York City.

Someone in the story said the victims were lucky to be alive. It rubbed me the wrong way.

Having dealt with cancer, and pain, I understand how even a minor injury can totally impact a person's quality of life.

I would never say that someone who got hit by a car while walking down the street was lucky.

I wonder if they will have scars, back pain, medical bills.

When people say I am lucky my cancer wasn't worse, it really frustrates me.

Don't get me wrong, I am grateful for the positive aspects of my prognosis. I am happy I have good doctors. I am so glad to have insurance. Most of all I am amazingly fortunate to have my wonderful, supportive spouse.

A spouse who feels lucky I am still around. But I still struggle with the word.

I save lucky for the people walking around on the street who don't have cancer and didn't get hit by a car.

Anyhow, on a husband related note, this article really hits home.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

J.C. Hayward Keeps it Real

I always worry this blog will somehow end up skewed to news-anchors-with-breast-cancer.

But I am in awe of the mighty J.C. Haward.

I am no spring chicken in my profession, but I watched J.C. when I was a little girl growing up in Maryland. Her work is burned into my DNA.

I really skipped a breath when I heard she was diagnosed.

Now plenty of news-anchors-with-breast-cancer will do a story on their journey. But I have never seen a public figure be as open and revealing as JC is in these photos.


Yes, it is hard in a way to see a woman who symbolized news desk style in surgery, but I give her a great amount of credit.

Get well soon J.C.



Friday, April 6, 2012

Of Dreams and Devils: Remembering Katherine Russell Rich

Katherine Russell Rich had at least two claims to fame. Her talent as a writer, and her 19 years of survival with metastatic breast cancer.

She wrote two books, “Dreaming in Hindi: Coming Awake in Another Language” and “The Red Devil: To Hell With Cancer — and Back.”

I didn't really know her, beyond a few email exchanges. But she was just exceptional.

Rich stretched the idea of what it meant to be diagnosed with advanced breast cancer.

Not just a medical fluke, she was able to articulate her experience. She frequently made the point that medical science should be studying the "outliers,"the women who live more than a decade with metastatic breast cancer.

She was our war correspondent, reporting from the frontline.

I have posted a few links, to her articles, and sadly to her obituary.





Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Giuliana Rancic Shares Body Image Struggles After Breast Cancer and Mastectomy

I have to admit until last night I never thought much about Giuliana Rancic's breast cancer journey.

Her initial reveals on TV seemed a touch unrealistic. I think many celebrities want to send a positive, "get that screening" message out so they don't share their actual hardships.

Kylie Minogue is a wonderful exception, griping about the side effects of Tamoxifen,

I don't begrudge anyone their path, but when I hear about people playing in Grand Slams or performing on Broadway through treatment, I feel like an under achiever.

Initially, Giuliana seemed so certain cancer would not effect her baby plans, and so quick to return to work I had a tough time relating to her.

Sometimes I feel like the world expects all of us to bounce back in a jiffy.

I feel awful writing this, but I was in a sense relieved when Carly Fiorina had to go public with her infection. People don't realize that infections are a common side effect, and at least I could kind of point to her and explain. I felt like my co-workers had a point of reference.

But back to our impossibly slender, fashionable survivor Giuliana.

Last night for some reason I ended up watching the E! True Hollywood Story about her, and kind of changed my take on her. Yes, she has one perky positive attitude but is seems more sincere and realistic. Like most of us she took time to grown into this new reality.

I give her a lot of credit for this clip.

Gosh I remember switching bra after bra trying to get comfortable, and all the fashion compromises. I actually accepted a journalism award a few weeks after radiation and heavens, in the photo I look AWFUL. I couldn't really wear a bra yet and in what was supposed to be my big moment was left awkwardly flopping around.

Bless Giuliana for showing the world that dealing with breast cancer can mean a million mundane yet frustrating struggles.

By the way Giuliana & Bill is on the Style Network. Silly me I kept looking for it on E!

Style network now has a breast cancer information page.