Surviving Breast Cancer

October 5, 2011

 The Philadelphia Inquirier/Daily News

A Breast Cancer Awareness Month supplement in the Philadelphia Inquirer/Philadelphia Daily News features several Abramson Cancer Center faculty members.

  • "Previvors": Genetically Targeted to Get Breast Cancer
  • Timothy Rebbeck, PhD, a professor of Epidemiology and director of the Center for Genetic and Complex Traits in the Abramson Cancer Center, is quoted in a story about efforts to identify more women who are at risk of developing breast cancer and help them reduce their chance of getting the disease. About 60 percent to 70 percent of women with a BRCA mutation eventually have their ovaries removed, Rebbeck said. He led the world's largest prospective study of women with BRCA mutations, with over 5,000 women enrolled at research centers worldwide. "Probably every woman [with a BRCA mutation] should have an oophorectomy at some point," Rebbeck said. "It's lifesaving." Some women put the surgery off because they want more children, others because they "are in denial," he said. "They're not dealing with the information they have. They're choosing by not choosing."

  • Reconstruction: Choices After Breast Cancer Treatment
  • John Glick, MD, the Madlyn and Leonard Abramson Professor of Clinical Oncology and president of the Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute, is quoted in an article about reconstructive surgery options for women dealing with breast cancer. Glick says his practice is to refer all women, with their permission, to a plastic surgeon so they know the many options for reconstruction during or after their treatment: "No one should do without reconstruction because she hasn't been educated about that choice."

  • Alternative Breast Cancer Care Gaining Acceptance
  • Research conducted by Kathryn Schmitz, PhD, MPH, an associate professor of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, and Jun Mao, MD, MSCE, assistant professor of Family Medicine and Community Health and director of Integrative Medicine in the Abramson Cancer Center, is highlighted in a Philadelphia Inquirer breast cancer supplement story about the growing role of "alternative" medicine such as exercise and acupuncture in the care of breast cancer-related side effects.