Breast Cancer

Treatment Articles


Statement of Dr. Diana Zuckerman, President, National Center for Health Research, May 8, 2023 Today the FDA announced that 19 women were reported in medical publications who developed squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) in the capsule around breast implants. This is more than the 10 women that FDA reported in September. Several of the women died.  It is important to know that 24 cases of SCC have … Continue reading Statement of Dr. Diana Zuckerman, President, National Center for Health Research,
Statement on Keytruda for Early Stage Triple Negative Breast Cancer February 9, 2021: We agree with FDA scientists that Keytruda is not proven to be effective for women with early stage triple negative breast cancer, but can cause serious health problems.
Dr. Diana Zuckerman’s Statement on FDA’s Draft Guidance on Labeling for Breast Implants Statement of Dr. Diana Zuckerman, President, National Center for Health Research on October 23 Regarding FDA Labeling Recommendations to Improve Patient Communication Draft Guidance We thank the FDA for proposing a black box warning and a patient Informed Consent check list that provides specific, understandable information about the risks of breast implants.  The FDA’s draft … Continue reading Dr. Diana Zuckerman’s Statement on FDA’s Draft Guidance on Labeling for Breast Implants
Insurance Coverage Information for Breast Implant Removal A step-by-step guide to try to get insurance coverage for your breast implant removal. This guide covers the necessary information to file an insurance claim for breast implant removal surgery.
NCHR Statement on FDA’s Request for Recall of Allergan Breast Implants and Expanders Statement of Dr. Diana Zuckerman, President, National Center for Health Research on July 24 Announced Recall of Allergan Biocell Breast Implants and Expanders h Research on July 24 Announced Recall of Allergan Biocell Breast Implants and Expanders “The FDA announced today that at its request, Allergan is implementing a worldwide recall of their Biocell textured … Continue reading NCHR Statement on FDA’s Request for Recall of Allergan Breast Implants and Expanders
Breast Reconstruction Options After Mastectomy If you are considering breast reconstruction after a mastectomy, make sure you review your options so you can decide on the best choice for you. There are many options for reconstruction including reconstruction with Autologous Tissue Transfer, also called Flap Procedures, that use your body’s own tissue to reconstruct breasts.
Patient Satisfaction After Breast Reconstruction with Implants Compared to Flap Procedures A 2018 study by Katherine Santosa and her colleagues found that patients who undergo autologous breast reconstruction (also called “flap” procedures), are generally more satisfied in the long-term than women who choose reconstruction with breast implants. 
Summary of Published Study by MD Anderson Physicians on the Increase in Rare Diseases Among Women with Breast Implants We summarize the study conducted by MD Anderson Cancer Center regarding the incidence of rare diseases among women with breast implants.
Statement of Dr. Diana Zuckerman, President of the National Center for Health Research Regarding the New Study of 100,000 Women with Breast Implants Dr. Diana Zuckerman, the president of NCHR, makes a statement in support of the newly released MD Anderson study that shows breast implants are linked to illness.
Radiation Therapy for Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS) Radiation and hormone therapy both have benefits for most women who undergo lumpectomy, because they decrease the chances of DCIS returning after surgery.
Mastectomies to Prevent Cancer Diana Zuckerman, PhD, Cancer Prevention and Treatment Fund Every year, thousands of women choose to undergo a mastectomy when lumpectomy would be an equally effective option for them. Some women choose a bilateral mastectomy when there is cancer in only one breast. These strategies are not effective at preventing recurrence or living longer.  But what about … Continue reading Mastectomies to Prevent Cancer
Hormonal Therapy for Post-menopausal Women with Early Stage Breast Cancer What are the risks and benefits of tamoxifen and other hormonal treatments for women with post-menopausal breast cancer?
Hormonal Therapy for Pre-menopausal Women with Early Stage Breast Cancer What are the risks and benefits of tamoxifen and other hormonal treatments for women with pre-menopausal breast cancer?
Ovarian Suppression Therapy for Young, Pre-Menopausal Women with Early-Stage Breast Cancer For young pre-menopausal women with estrogen-positive breast cancer, ovarian suppression therapy slightly reduces the chance of dying of breast cancer, but it doesn’t help women live longer. Because the therapy can be harmful with permanent side effects, young women should decide whether the small benefits outweigh the risks. Talk with your doctor about whether the risks outweigh the benefits for you.
Targeted Therapy for Early-Stage Breast Cancer For women with HER2-positive, early-stage breast cancer, targeted therapy may be beneficial. Because the therapy can be harmful to the heart, each woman needs to decide whether the benefits outweigh the risks for her. Talk with your doctor about your medical history and family history to decide which treatment options may be right for you.
What are the Alternatives to Traditional Radiation Therapy for Breast Cancer? Women with early-stage breast cancer can safely choose lumpectomy instead of mastectomy if they also undergo radiation treatment to reduce recurrence. However, traditional radiation therapy requires a treatment schedule that is difficult for many patients. Several newer types of radiation treatments have been developed so that more women can have the choice of lumpectomy with radiation.
Drugs to Avoid for Women Taking Tamoxifen If you are taking tamoxifen, be sure to avoid any medications that interfere with its effectiveness.
Question: I Have Been Diagnosed with Breast Cancer. What Are My Options so That I Can Still Have Breasts? FAQs about keeping or restructuring your breasts after breast cancer treatment.
Are Mastectomies Necessary for Women with BRCA1 or BRCA2? What About for Women Without the Breast Cancer Gene? When Angelina Jolie publicly announced her double mastectomy in 2013, she was praised for possibly saving many women’s lives. But we know more today than we did then and experts now agree that too many women are undergoing unnecessary mastectomies. Here are the facts.
Are breast implants safe? What is FDA’s Track Record? In 2011, the FDA announced that saline breast implants and silicone gel breast implants were linked to a rare cancer of the immune system.
After Mastectomies, an Unexpected Blow: Numb New Breasts Dane’e McCree decided to have her breasts removed. Her doctor assured her that surgery would spare her nipples and leave her with natural-looking breasts.
Sientra’s Silimed Brand “Gummy Bear” Silicone Gel Breast Implants Pose Safety Questions In December 2012, the FDA approved Sientra’s “Silimed silicone gel breast implants.” These implants are also called “gummy breast implants” because they are made of a thicker gel that is said to resemble candy gummy bears. But are they safe?
Can Vitamin D Prevent Breast Cancer and Skin Cancer? New research suggests that vitamin D may help women diagnosed with breast cancer to survive the disease.
What Women Need to Know About Inflammatory Breast Cancer Separate facts from myths about inflammatory breast cancer.
Could a Common and Inexpensive Heart Medicine (Beta-Blockers) Help Cancer Patients Live Longer? Doctors and researchers noticed that when cancer patients took beta-blockers because of their heart disease, they tended to live longer than other cancer patients. They decided to study whether beta-blockers significantly improve survival for several different types of cancer.
DCIS, LCIS, Pre-Cancer and Other “Stage Zero”; Breast Conditions: What Kind of Treatment – If Any – Is Needed? Many women are diagnosed with abnormal breast conditions that are not cancer or may never develop into invasive cancer, such as DCIS.
Less Radical Surgery Is a Healthier Choice for Women with Breast Cancer Experts agree that lumpectomy patients live longer than mastectomy patients with better quality of life. BCT is superior to more radical surgery. Bilateral mastectomy has no survival benefit.
Summary of: Breast Implants, Self-Esteem, Quality of Life, and the Risk of Suicide Women’s Health Issues, August, 2016. Breast augmentation is the most common cosmetic surgery in the United States, and many women are also encouraged to choose breast implants for reconstruction after a mastectomy. However, studies in the United States and Scandinavian countries have shown that suicide rates are higher for women with implants.
Breast implants after mastectomy: Risks you need to know Concerns about breast implants in post mastectomy reconstruction.
Why do mastectomy patients with breast implants commit suicide? One study of suicide among women who got breast implants after mastectomy found that their suicide rate was 10 times higher compared to other mastectomy patients.
DCIS: Mostly good news More women are getting an early diagnosis of breast cancer known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). Although it is good to find cancer before it becomes life-threatening, many women do not get enough information on their treatment options and end up receiving unnecessary treatment.
The Benefits of Exercise After Getting Diagnosed with Cancer You may have heard that regular exercise can reduce your risk of developing cancer, but did you know it’s also good for cancer patients who are undergoing or have completed treatment?
Prophylactic or optional mastectomies If you are someone you know is thinking about getting a mastectomy, read this article to learn important information that should be discussed with your doctor before choosing your breast cancer treatment.
Mastectomy v. Lumpectomy: Who Decides? Many women who are eligible for breast-conserving surgery, such as lumpectomy, are getting mastectomies. Studies have found that some women are not even told that lumpectomies are an option.
Free patient booklet on ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) Our patient booklet, DCIS: What You Need to Know, helps women diagnosed with DCIS understand the difference between DCIS and Stage 1 breast cancer, and discuss treatment options with their doctor. It was funded by a grant from the DC Cancer Consortium through the Department of Health, Government of the District of Columbia, with additional support from the Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Foundation.
BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations: when your genes increase your cancer risk BRCA1 and BRCA2 are human genes that produce proteins that suppress tumors and repair damage to our DNA. If there is a mutation in one of these genes and they do not work properly, DNA damage may not be repaired. This can eventually cause cancer. If you find out that you have the BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, it doesn’t mean you will definitely get breast or ovarian cancer. There are a few ways you can lower your risk of breast and ovarian cancer
Early stage breast cancer: a patient and doctor dialogue Answers to your breast cancer questions.
A booklet for patients: surgery choices for women with early-stage breast cancer Concerned about your treatment options for early-stage breast cancer? Look at our free booklet made in collaboration with the National Cancer Institute.
Angelina Jolie’s Decision Huffington Post, May 16, 2013. Did Angelina Jolie make the right decision? And should that influence other women? Our president Dr. Diana Zuckerman explains why Angelina’s risk of breast cancer is lower than she was told and what the implications are for you.
Will Breast Implants Improve Your Life? Despite the claims of plastic surgeons that breast implants improve patients’ self-esteem and quality of life, there is no scientific support for those statements.
Surgery after Lumpectomy: Is it Possible to get All the Cancer out on the First Try? Almost 25% of breast cancer lumpectomies are followed by additional surgery. A lack of agreement among surgeons, different surgical practices at hospitals, and other factors may be contributing to why some women are having too many surgeries and others not enough.
Free Fast Facts on Ductal Carcinoma in Situ (DCIS) for Medical Professionals The Cancer Prevention and Treatment Fund has created a fact sheet on DCIS for doctors, nurses, patient navigators and social workers. Fast Facts for Medical Professionals summarizes the NIH State-of-the-Science Conference Statement as well as the latest research on treatment options. Fast Facts was funded by a grant from the DC Cancer Consortium through the Department of Health, Government of the District of Columbia.
Are Silicone Breast Implants Safe for Cancer Patients? Women with breast cancer often choose mastectomy because they don’t want to ever have to think about the cancer again. Unfortunately, the latest research shows that if they get reconstruction with silicone gel implants, they are likely to have many complications and need additional surgery.
Women as Guinea Pigs: Tungsten in Breast Cancer Patients A year after their doctors used a tungsten shield during radiation treatment after lumpectomy, some women must consider mastectomies to rid their bodies of the tungsten, not cancer–a problem that would not have happened if the device had been carefully tested before the device was sold.
FDA Review Indicates Possible Association Between Breast Implants and a Rare Cancer ALCL, a type of cancer of the immune system, is developing in the breast area of women with breast implants more often than for women who don’t have breast implants. When women with implants have breast pain or abnormalities they need to see their primary care physician or OB/GYN to have it checked out.
Gene Test Will Help Determine Which Women with Breast Cancer Will Benefit from Which Chemotherapy A test to measure CEP17 can help physicians choose the most effective chemotherapy to improve a patient’s chances of survival. Chemotherapy has very unpleasant side effects, and choosing the most effective chemotherapy the first time helps patients fight cancer more quickly.
Decisions in the dark: The FDA, breast cancer survivors, and silicone implants Breast Cancer Survivors Making Surgery Decisions With Limited Information
Tips for Preventing a Recurrence of Breast Cancer Maintaining a healthier lifestyle can help prevent cancer from recurring.