Becoming a Mother after Breast Cancer Treatment
by Evelyn Mok-Lin, MD, and Glenn Schattman, MD
The opportunity to have children, raise a family, and experience the joys of motherhood is a very real prospect for many young women with breast cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates that there are currently over 350,000 young women between the ages of 20 and 39 years old living with cancer in the U.S. Because there are so many reproductive-age cancer survivors who may want children in the future, the topic of fertility has become increasingly important to a woman’s treatment, recovery, and healing process.
Young Women & Breast Cancer
Once you have completed treatment for breast cancer, you may have some lingering side effects. Where you once felt like a healthy young woman, you may now encounter what feels like constantly changing physical ailments. It is natural to become frustrated with these issues, but knowing what to look for and open communication with your medical team can help alleviate symptoms and worry.
Genetic Markers Linked To the Development of Lymphedema in Breast Cancer Survivors
A new University of California San Francisco (UCSF) study has found a clear association between certain genes and the development of lymphedema, a painful and chronic condition that often occurs after breast cancer surgery and some other cancer treatments. The researchers also learned that the risks of developing lymphedema increased significantly for women who had more advanced breast cancer at the time of diagnosis, more lymph nodes removed or a significantly higher body mass index.
Meeting the Challenges of Breast Cancer as a Young Woman
Young women facing the challenges of breast cancer deserve to live full and meaningful lives. You have many options for making your life the best it can be. Regardless of your stage, the treatment you endured, or where you are in your breast cancer experience, you can and should strive for your highest quality of life. That will mean something different to every young woman. We all experience breast cancer differently and value different things in our lives. Circumstances change, too, and achieving your best life might mean different things on different days and might call for different approaches.
Breast Cancer & Your Emotional Well-Being
by Linda Sutton, MD
The moment you’re diagnosed with breast cancer, your life is irrevocably changed. Regardless of your prognosis, you know that you will never again be someone who hasn’t had cancer. Some people find this burden overwhelming, particularly in the early days just after diagnosis. However, others are able to turn the experience around, growing and blossoming on their journey rather than being weighed down. What makes the difference?
Lymphoseek Approved to Help Locate Lymph Nodes in Patients with Certain Cancers
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Lymphoseek Injection, a radioactive diagnostic imaging agent that helps doctors locate lymph nodes in patients with breast cancer or melanoma who are undergoing surgery to remove tumor-draining lymph nodes.
New Treatment for Late-stage Breast Cancer
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Kadcyla (ado-trastuzumab emtansine), a new therapy for patients with HER2-positive, late-stage (metastatic) breast cancer. Kadcyla is intended for patients who were previously treated with trastuzumab, another anti-HER2 therapy, and taxanes, a class of chemotherapy drugs commonly used for the treatment of breast cancer.
If Breast Cancer Comes Back
If breast cancer comes back, it may return in the same place. This is called a recurrence, because it is not a new cancer. But a recurrence can also appear in a place not directly related to the first breast cancer. This is called a metastasis, and if cancer is detected in several areas, these are called metastases.