Archive | September, 2012

Join Ellis Fischel Cancer Center for a Spa Night Out for Women with Breast Cancer

26 Sep


Breast Cancer Survivors Invited to Sisters HOPE Retreat

23 Sep

Check out colleges on diversity weekends

20 Sep

Many colleges host diversity visits in fall so families can see what schools have to offer their students. Often these weekends are free to attend or visitors are providing funding for transportation, meals or housing.

See a list of schools and application deadlines for diversity weekends here:

Cancer is costly. Here are some answers for your financial concerns.

19 Sep

Living Beyond Breast Cancer offers many resources for breast cancer patients, survivors and their families and supporters.

One of the biggest worries people have is about money. Health insurance is expensive, emergency care is costly, pills and treatments, X-rays and scans and vitamins….The list goes on.


One of the LBBC resources focuses on financial concerns. It offers a free guide you can download that explains about health insurance plans and claims or how to utilize programs if you don’t have insurance, how to take time off or manage if you lose your job, how to maintain your privacy and other practicalities like child care, travel or saving for your family’s future.

Download the free guide here:

Learn about breast cancer genetics

15 Sep

Jill Stopfer, MS, CGC, a founding member of the Cancer Genetics Program at Abramson Cancer Center, answers several questions about breast cancer genetics for Living Beyond Breast Cancer.

Some of the questions were about genetic mutations and counseling for cancers passed from through genes, the cost of genetic testing and whether it’s covered by public insurance (Medicaid and Medicare), the accuracy of test results and how to interpret them, and risks for other types of cancer for breast cancer survivors.

You can read her answers here:

Mammograms risky for younger women

11 Sep

An article in Time magazine says young women under 30 with BRCA1 or 2 gene mutations that put them at a higher risk for breast cancer could be harmed by radiation from mammograms and might instead consider getting an MRI when being screened. While mammograms are recommended for those over 50, the potential for radiation to harm younger women’s DNA-repairing genes might be worth avoiding the extra chest radiation.

Make sure you talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of different screening procedures to find the one that’s right for you.

Read the full article here:

Women’s health fair this weekend

10 Sep

On Saturday, the Walking in the Spirit team attended the Women’s Quarterly Prayer Breakfast at the Jefferson City Church of God in Christ. About 30 women were present for discussions about “The Virtuous Woman” (Proverbs 31), nutrition and fitness.

This Saturday, Sept. 15, we’ll attend the Women’s Day Mini Wellness Workshop at Second Missionary Baptist Church in Columbia. The program is from 9:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. The event will include a session on self-defense for women, information about menopause and an inspirational talk. Additionally, we have invited Dr. Rashmi Ramasubbaiah, an assistant professor of clinical  medicine at MU, to facilitate a discussion about cancer called “Armed and Ready for the Fight.”

Mizzou program seeking breast cancer survivors for charity benefit show

7 Sep

The Mizzou Black Men’s Initiative program is hosting its MODEL P!NK breast cancer fashion show on Thursday, Oct. 11, to help raise awareness and funds for breast cancer. Proceeds benefit Ellis Fischel Cancer Center.

The show will include a “Survivor Walk” aimed at honoring breast cancer survivors.

Students also will perform in Speak P!nk spoken word interludes between fashion themes. The program is looking for breast cancer survivors who are willing to sit down with a few of the student artists and share their stories.

Contact Marcus Mayes, the program coordinator, at if you are interested in volunteering.

Do’s and Don’ts of Eating Out

7 Sep

Busy schedules leave little time to grocery shop or cook, so many of us resort to eating out to feed hungry spouses and kids. These meals out aren’t only pricey, their high caloric and fat content can also lead to unwanted weight gain.

Main Line Health offers several tips for keeping nutrition in mind when dining out, including practicing portion control and skipping fatty sides and toppings.

To read more tips, visit the organization’s website.

Breast cancer patients with high density mammograms don’t have higher risk of death

6 Sep

High mammographic breast density, which is a marker of increased risk of developing breast cancer, does not seem to increase the risk of death among breast cancer patients, according to a study led by Gretchen L. Gierach, Ph.D., of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health.  The research was conducted in collaboration with investigators from the NCI-sponsored Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium (BCSC).

In the study of over 9,000 women with a confirmed diagnosis of breast cancer, high mammographic density was not associated with the risk of death from breast cancer or death from all causes combined.  The study appeared Aug. 20, 2012, in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Mammographic breast density reflects the tissue composition of the breast as seen on a mammogram. High mammographic density appears as extensive white areas on an X-ray.  Glandular and connective tissue, together known as fibroglandular tissue, block the passage of X-rays to a greater extent than fatty tissue. Breasts with a greater proportion of fibroglandular tissue are said, therefore, to be mammographically denser. For most women, mammographic breast density decreases as they get older, reflecting gradual replacement of fibroglandular tissue by fatty tissue during the normal aging process.

Although high mammographic breast density is a well-established risk factor for developing breast cancer, it was unclear prior to this study whether breast density is also associated with the risk of death among women diagnosed with breast cancer. To address this question the scientists analyzed data from the BCSC, a population-based registry of breast imaging facilities in the United States. The scientists restricted their analysis to five BCSC registries that consistently collect data on body mass index (BMI). BMI is a poor prognostic factor for breast cancer that is inversely related to breast density and therefore might potentially affect associations between density and breast cancer death.

Patients included in the study were 30 years or older at breast cancer diagnosis, which occurred primarily between January 1996 and December 2005. The patients were followed, on average, for 6.6 years, at which time 1,795 deaths were reported, including 889 from breast cancer and 810 from other causes. To analyze breast density, the scientists used the most widely available measure of breast density currently in clinical use, a score known as the Breast Imaging-Reporting and Data System score, which is given by a radiologist based on visual review of a mammogram. Data on tumor characteristics and other personal and health factors were also analyzed.

The analysis of mammographic density showed that breast cancer patients with high-density breasts did not have a higher risk of death from breast cancer than patients with lower density breasts, after adjusting for other health factors and tumor characteristics. The lack of an association between mammographic breast density and breast cancer death is consistent with findings from an earlier, smaller study that examined this association.

This study also found an increase in risk of breast cancer death associated with lower breast density among specific subgroups, particularly breast cancer patients who are obese. The authors speculate that one possible explanation for the increased risk associated with low breast density among some subgroups is that breasts with a higher percentage of fat may provide a tumor microenvironment that facilitates cancer growth and progression.

“Overall, it was reassuring to find that high mammographic breast density, one of the strongest risk factors for breast cancer, was not related to risk of death from breast cancer or death from any cause among breast cancer patients,” said Gierach. “Given that we identified subsets of women with breast cancer for whom low density was associated with poor prognoses, our findings underscore the need for an improved understanding of the biological components that are responsible for breast density.”

To view an interview with a radiologist about digital mammography and the challenges posed by dense breasts, please visit: