Giving Voice to Canadians Concerned About Breast Cancer

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Our Voices Blog


Contributor : CBCN Team

Our new white paper: what are patients and physicians saying about biosimilars in breast cancer?

We talked a lot on this blog last year about biosimilars; what they are and why it’s important to know about them. With the entry of biosimilars in the breast cancer treatment landscape due later this year, there are still questions and discussions about how it will affect current and future breast cancer patients. To help understand these questions and perspectives, we decided it was important to bring together those people who are impacted the most: patients and physicians.

Breast Cancer Related Lymphedema Part 2: Early Signs, and Treatments

In Part 1 we discussed the risk factors of lymphedema and tips for reducing this risk. Today we’re helping you identify early signs and what treatments are available for lymphedema.

Breast Cancer Related Lymphedema Part 1: Risk Factors

Breast cancer-related lymphedema is abnormal swelling that can develop in the arm, hand, breast, or torso on the side treated for breast cancer where lymph nodes have been removed.  Lymphedema can develop suddenly or gradually. It can happen soon after surgery or can develop months or years later.

What is Canada’s new food guide all about?

Canada’s new food guide is, in one word, refreshing! First off, it makes us hungry just looking at it. And secondly, it does away with the confusing portion sizes and focuses more on practical tips for incorporating healthier foods into our diets. 

The importance of having access to financial resources

We asked Tricia, a member of our patient advisory committee, to share her thoughts on our newest digital tool, the FinancialNavigator, designed to help connect patients with financial resources in their community. Here’s what she had to say.

How can we ease the financial burden of breast cancer?

When you are first told you have breast cancer, your thoughts can immediately turn to your mortality and how to best save your life. You worry about how your diagnosis will affect your family, spouse or kids. More and more, the realities of the disease begin to set in and the impact it can have on your finances becomes more apparent. 

What’s pharmacare and why should it matter to breast cancer patients?

It’s just the start of 2019 but we’re already thinking about fall and the federal election it brings with it. Last year, there was a lot of talk about the establishment of a national pharmacare plan. The federal government assembled a working group to study the best way a system like this would work in Canada.

10 low-key ways to make Valentine’s Day better when you have breast cancer

February is here, which means Valentine’s Day is around the corner. Valentine’s is a day that you either love or hate. And throwing the C-word into the mix can make it hard even when it’s something you’re usually excited for.

I Am And I Will this World Cancer Day

World Cancer Day on February 4th gives us a chance to reflect on 2018, the work we’ve accomplished and the work that still needs to be done. This year, WCD has a brand-new message: I Am And I Will.

My beautiful baby saved my life

I remember sitting in the small room waiting for the doctor to come in.  I was nervous but didn’t think anything was wrong.  The doctor came in and asked how I was.  I gave my usual cheery response that everything was good but added that “it depended on what he was going to tell me…ha ha ha”.  I laughed but my jovial manner quickly subsided when my doctor sat down and the words “it’s not good” came out.  My heart dropped.  He then said, “It’s cancer”.  My heart dropped again.

Meet Cathy Hemeon, CBCN’s new board member

The Canadian Breast Cancer Network is pleased to welcome a new member to our board of directors.  Cathy Hemeon of Mount Pearl, Newfoundland brings many years of experience in the health care field to her new role.  She, like all CBCN board members, is also a breast cancer survivor.  She was diagnosed in February 2016 with Stage I triple positive breast cancer following a screening MRI.

7 interesting highlights from the 2018 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium

Last month, we had the opportunity to attend the 2018 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS). Here’s some of the key highlights to come out of the conference. 

Looking on the bright side

In June 2015, I moved to London, Ontario and was recovering from a rather emotional and difficult time, having divorced in June 2014.  I had moved from Sault Ste. Marie to be closer to my daughter with her husband and very young children.  I would be seeing the rest of my family less often now – my parents, my two sisters, my daughter and her husband, and another granddaughter. and two step grandchildren.

A patient’s perspective on MedSearch

Tell us a little bit about yourself, where you’re from, and your experience with breast cancer.

Q&A with ODANO on how they can help you access drug coverage

Last month, we connected with Alan from ODANO, the Oncology Drug Access Navigators of Ontario, to answer a few questions about who they are and how they help patients in Ontario access life-saving medications.

Here’s how we’re helping breast cancer patients through your donations

Giving Tuesday is coming up on November 27th and we wanted to take this opportunity to highlight some of the amazing work Canadians have done to support the Canadian Breast Cancer Network. The Annual Pink Ribbons Project Gala hosted by the Full Circle Foundation for Wellness is a perfect example of community involvement shaping CBCN’s valuable resources.

Living flat is freedom

My name is Alison Thompson and I was diagnosed with breast cancer five years ago.  To give you some background, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer about 15 years ago.  Her cancer was an aggressive form. It spread to her spine and brain, and she passed away about three years after the initial diagnosis. 

Finding Harmony after Breast Reconstruction

I was forty years old, running a successful business, comfortable in my finances, and feeling ready to settle down and start a family. Suddenly, a breast cancer diagnosis upended my sense of contentment and sent me on a journey of chemotherapy, immunotherapy, hormone therapy, a preventative double mastectomy, and, ultimately, reconstructive surgery.

SurgeryGuide is much-needed

For Andrea Sveinbjornson of Regina, the Canadian Breast Cancer Network’s new SurgeryGuide is an invaluable tool, one that she wishes she had when she had to make decisions about breast surgery in 2016.

Could a simple blood test help detect breast cancer?

That’s what Dr. Majumder and her team of researchers at Brandon University in Manitoba are hoping to find out. Dr. Majumder, Assistant Professor in Cancer Genetics and Cell Biology, is screening blood plasma from breast cancer patients and patients who don’t have breast cancer to determine if there is a blood biomarker like micro RNA (miRNA) that could potentially tell us when breast cancer is present or growing in a person.