I promise

"I promise, Suzy... Even if it takes the rest of my life." - Nancy G. Brinker, founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure

What is Triple Negative Breast Cancer?

WHAT IS TRIPLE NEGATIVE BREAST CANCER?

Just in recent years, Triple Negative Breast Cancer has sparked interest in the news where instead of calling the tumor as ER-negative, PR-negative, and HER2-negative; researchers began using the shorthand term, "Triple Negative," dubbed the "new type" type of cancer. Being Triple Negative, you don't have a targeted therapy and that your only treatment option is chemotherapy.

Triple Negative is seen in about 15% of all breast cancers. Triple Negative is a very aggressive cancer that tends to strike younger women, pre-menopause, especially among African-American women and women who have BRCA1 mutations. The tumor tends to be fast growing and is less likely to show up on an annual mammogram. TN is more likely to metastasis early on; has a high rate of recurrence in the first 2-3 years from diagnosis and has a poorer prognosis than other types of breast cancer due to lack of specific, targeted treatment for TNBC.

Carpe diem

Seize Each new Day with Renewed Strength,
Believe in Yourself, Go forward with
Courage and faith
to face whatever Tomorrow may bring.

Chicks For Charity motto:

Enjoy life. Laugh a lot.
Work hard. Play hard.
Be thankful for our blessings.
Share the wisdom. Give back
.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Remembering Triple Negative Breast Cancer Sister, Kady Haynes Cosio

Kady
Loss of another lady in our support group to TNBC. Kady Haynes Cosio, Age 30, departed on April 22, 2014 after fighting breast cancer for 2 years. Kady was originally diagnosed January 2012 with Triple Negative Invasive Mammary Carcinoma, (TN IMC) Stage 2b. One year later, January 2013, Kady had a (TN IMC) local recurrence and metastasis to liver that was estrogen positive. I barely crossed paths with Kady for we were both at the same C4YW 2014 Conference in Orlando in February. I remember seeing her dancing at the survivor party not knowing she was the Kady that I knew from our online group. So disheartening to hear of another young woman passing from this disease... our targeted therapy and/or cure just has not come quick enough for too many ladies that I have met through our online TNBC groups. We need to continue to fight for these ladies and hope for more tomorrows that are still battling. Rest peacefully Kady.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

There is Life After Breast Cancer...

Melissa Paskvan on bottom pic
Survivors Rock!

Thanks so much for coming to THERE IS LIFE AFTER BREAST CANCER's booth at the YSC 2014 Conference in Orlando. It was fun meeting each and every one of you! 

We have uploaded the amazing and spectacular bubblegum ribbon photos to our  FACEBOOK page  Be sure to like us, then tag yourself and your friends. 

We look forward to connecting with all you warriors again!

XOXO, 
Hayley Townley & Margerie Manning


An Empowering Site for Breast Cancer Survivors and Their Loved Ones. 




Saturday, April 19, 2014

Triple Negative Breast Cancer, a Medical Update 2014


Rita Nanda, M.D.
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Co-Director, Breast Medical Oncology Program
University of Chicago Medicine 

April 17, 2014 



http://www.lbbc.org/Event-Archive/2014-04-17-TNBC-Medical-Update (Click link to download Podcast and Powerpoint)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Remembering TNBC Sister, Adriana Martinez Olsen...


"I appreciate you all for supporting me, being my cheerleaders, being the gals who share your journeys, hardships, tears and laughter morning, noon or in the middle of the night." - Adriana


Diagnosed 2009, TNBC Stage2.  Stage4, Recurrence to chest in December 2010. 
"I'm seriously a miracle because right about now, I wasn't supposed to be here... NED since Aug 31st of last year."  (June 2013)
Adriana remained "no evidence of disease" (NED) for 2+ years while doing Carbo/PARP trial. December 2013, diagnosed with brain mets.
March 2014- Cancer spreads and was taken off the Carbo/Parp trial after at least 44 treatments over the past 3 years since her original recurrence.
Sadly, Adriana Olsen, Age 36, passed away on April 13th, 2014. Us TNBC ladies have been hit with too much heartache these days, we will miss you Adriana.


Back from our trip. Saddened to hear of Janelle's news. 
This is for you gals, and especially for her. Lit a candle in Christ Church Cathedral in 
Dublin, wrote a prayer in the prayer book. Janelle, you are on my mind. 
I have a video of me lighting the candle that I will post on her page with a message. 
Peace and love
— at Christ Church Cathedral Dublin

Remembering TNBC Sister Cheryl Wilkerson...

"Thank you to all my Sisters who fight right along beside each other no matter what their own circumstances....what a Blessing you all are!  Much Love! Cheryl"
"My original Dx TNBC Stage IIB was 10-27-11, clear margins and no lymph node involvement but had recurrence 8-20-12 and progression in June, 2013 while on Taxol Avastin. I have mets in both lung and a spot on my spine.... Stage IV." 
"I was originally on Cytoxan/Taxotere x 6, had 35 radiation but mets in less than a year. I then did Avastin/Taxol, then Erubulin. In September I had a lung biopsy, but started Xeloda while they wait to put me into a clinical trial. Then boom... Saturday night hit with a lot of dizziness, and symptoms. This all now confirmed with an MRI Yesterday showing brain mets." Underwent gamma knife to remove 6 cancerous tumors. - October 2013
Started Cytoxan and Methotrexate in pill form. Radiation treatments on tumor on chest that was affecting her pulmonary function and tumor on her spinal cord. - December 2013
Cheryl Wilkerson, age 56, lost her battle to TNBC on February 27, 2014.  We'll always remember your courageous fight, TNBC sister.
http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/thesouthern/obituary.aspx?n=cheryl-wilkerson&pid=169901394& 

Remembering TNBC Sister, Marijke Van Fleet-Silvent...

January 2013- Pregnancy-related breast cancer, found lump during last week of pregnancy. diagnosed with Triple Negative Breast Cancer with node involvement 3 weeks after giving birth. Nearly 4cm tumor.
Feb. 15, 2013- Started chemo first, AC hard time with nausea, tumor shrank
June 2013- Tumor started growing again rapidly during Taxol active treatment, Taxol stopped working. Stopped chemo treatments and scheduled urgent mastectomy
August 2013- scans clear
October 2013- bruised feeling pain on right side of head. Brain CT clear.
October 27, 2013- Intense "bruise pain" in chest/ribcage area. Cancer recurrence in both lungs, liver and bone
December 2013- Skull mets, protruding bulge on side of head. cancer spread to spine. Doesn't think the chemo is working. vision issues. Start full brain radiation.

"My toddler kissed me yesterday and said, "Mommy I hope your cancer gets better" and I just lost it!"

December 27, 2013- Cancer did not respond to Carbo/Gemsar chemo, spread to more organs and brain and increased in size my 20% in 8 weeks.

"Oncologist voiced the fear that has been in my head for weeks now -- that I have some crazy-strong-aggressive form of chemo-resistant breast cancer."

"...cry and ask God "Why? Oh why?" I HATE this damn disease and all the evil associated with it and the Hell it creates for families... words fail me when I try to explain how heartbroken I am about my two babies having to grow up without their mother because of this disease. God please give me more time... and help us to find a cure for this evil. Surely love can overcome even this evil. Please God, please..."


January 2014- Start Xeloda

Marijke J. (Van Fleet) Silvent, age 40, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, February 19th, 2014, in Leesburg, VA, after battling triple-negative breast cancer for over a year. You are missed by your TNBC sisters.

ashburn.patch.com/groups/obituaries/p/marijke-silvent-40

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

My Interview With My Local Newspaper For Triple Negative Breast Cancer Awareness Day.




http://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2014/03/04/Program-sheds-light-on-rare-cancer.html 
xMelissa Paskvan believes she is a breast cancer survivor today because she didn’t listen to her doctor’s advice nearly five years ago.
The 45-year-old Toledo woman discovered a lump by chance in 2009 while scratching an itch on her ribs just beneath her breast.
But when the mammogram came back negative, her original doctor told her it was probably just a cyst and that she probably shouldn’t be too alarmed.
“He was really reluctant, and he didn’t push to get it looked at. I’m glad I didn’t listen,” Ms. Paskvan said.
She had an ultrasound that showed a 2-centimeter growth, and she insisted that he take a biopsy of the growth immediately.
Two days later, the lab confirmed her suspicion that the mass was cancerous.
Ms. Paskvan soon learned that she was suffering from a very rare, aggressive form of breast cancer called Triple Negative Breast Cancer.
“I knew there was something there. I had a gut feeling. You have to be an advocate for your own body,” she said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 206,966 women in the United States were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010.
About 15 to 20 percent of all breast cancers are triple negative, said Dr. Iman Mohamed, chief of the division of hematology and oncology at the University of Toledo Medical Center, the former Medical College of Ohio.
In the Toledo area, about 94 women a year are diagnosed with this unique form of breast cancer.
“It is the one type of breast cancer that is not driven by hormones. It’s a cancer that doesn’t really have a target for treatment. It does respond to chemotherapy, but it tends to come back earlier,” Dr. Mohamed said.
Because it is not hormone-driven, it is a type of cancer that does not respond to the drugs given to other breast cancer patients after they complete chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
She added that this type of cancer also tends to strike younger women and African-American women disproportionately.
“This is all genetic. You can trace it back to where African-Americans started in Africa — in Nigeria, Ghana — and the variety that they have there is exactly the variety of Triple Negative Breast Cancer here,” she said.
Dr. Mohamed was the organizer of a special event at UTMC on Monday dedicated to increasing awareness about this specific form of breast cancer.
She only recently learned herself that March 3 has been designated as Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day nationally.
The event, “A Different Shade of Pink,” at the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center gave local cancer survivors an opportunity to come together and learn more about the newest treatments and services available to help them.
After Ms. Paskvan left her original doctor and started receiving treatment from Dr. Mohamed, they started a rigorous round of treatments to fight the cancer.
She had a lumpectomy, in which the doctors surgically removed the tumor two weeks after her diagnosis.
Then she started eight rounds of chemotherapy — one treatment per week, followed by 33 rounds of radiation treatment, she said.
Ms. Paskvan said she is doing well. She has moved on with her life and is making every moment count.
Dr. Mohamed said Ms. Paskvan has passed a critical threshold.
If it doesn’t return in the first two to three years after a patient completes treatments, “these women are probably cured,” Dr. Mohamed said.
“We are working on getting new therapies so even more woman survive,” she said. “I hope people walk out of this feeling more informed of this disease and the treatments available.”

Read more at https://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2014/03/04/Program-sheds-light-on-rare-cancer.html#cPmOUaOwGGv5cKqi.99
Melissa Paskvan believes she is a breast cancer survivor today because she didn’t listen to her doctor’s advice nearly five years ago.
The 45-year-old Toledo woman discovered a lump by chance in 2009 while scratching an itch on her ribs just beneath her breast.
But when the mammogram came back negative, her original doctor told her it was probably just a cyst and that she probably shouldn’t be too alarmed.
“He was really reluctant, and he didn’t push to get it looked at. I’m glad I didn’t listen,” Ms. Paskvan said.
She had an ultrasound that showed a 2-centimeter growth, and she insisted that he take a biopsy of the growth immediately.
Two days later, the lab confirmed her suspicion that the mass was cancerous.
Ms. Paskvan soon learned that she was suffering from a very rare, aggressive form of breast cancer called Triple Negative Breast Cancer.
“I knew there was something there. I had a gut feeling. You have to be an advocate for your own body,” she said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 206,966 women in the United States were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010.
About 15 to 20 percent of all breast cancers are triple negative, said Dr. Iman Mohamed, chief of the division of hematology and oncology at the University of Toledo Medical Center, the former Medical College of Ohio.
In the Toledo area, about 94 women a year are diagnosed with this unique form of breast cancer.
“It is the one type of breast cancer that is not driven by hormones. It’s a cancer that doesn’t really have a target for treatment. It does respond to chemotherapy, but it tends to come back earlier,” Dr. Mohamed said.
Because it is not hormone-driven, it is a type of cancer that does not respond to the drugs given to other breast cancer patients after they complete chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
She added that this type of cancer also tends to strike younger women and African-American women disproportionately.
“This is all genetic. You can trace it back to where African-Americans started in Africa — in Nigeria, Ghana — and the variety that they have there is exactly the variety of Triple Negative Breast Cancer here,” she said.
Dr. Mohamed was the organizer of a special event at UTMC on Monday dedicated to increasing awareness about this specific form of breast cancer.
She only recently learned herself that March 3 has been designated as Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day nationally.
The event, “A Different Shade of Pink,” at the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center gave local cancer survivors an opportunity to come together and learn more about the newest treatments and services available to help them.
After Ms. Paskvan left her original doctor and started receiving treatment from Dr. Mohamed, they started a rigorous round of treatments to fight the cancer.
She had a lumpectomy, in which the doctors surgically removed the tumor two weeks after her diagnosis.
Then she started eight rounds of chemotherapy — one treatment per week, followed by 33 rounds of radiation treatment, she said.
Ms. Paskvan said she is doing well. She has moved on with her life and is making every moment count.
Dr. Mohamed said Ms. Paskvan has passed a critical threshold.
If it doesn’t return in the first two to three years after a patient completes treatments, “these women are probably cured,” Dr. Mohamed said.
“We are working on getting new therapies so even more woman survive,” she said. “I hope people walk out of this feeling more informed of this disease and the treatments available.”

Read more at https://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2014/03/04/Program-sheds-light-on-rare-cancer.html#cPmOUaOwGGv5cKqi.99



Program sheds light on rare cancer

Younger women especially at risk

BY MARLENE HARRIS-TAYLOR
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Dr. Iman Mohamed speaks at the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center in Toledo during the ‘A Different Shade of Pink’ program on Monday, which was Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day nationwide. Dr. Iman Mohamed speaks at the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center in Toledo during the ‘A Different Shade of Pink’ program on Monday, which was Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day nationwide.
THE BLADE/LORI KING Enlarge | Buy This Photo
Melissa Paskvan believes she is a breast cancer survivor today because she didn’t listen to her doctor’s advice nearly five years ago.
The 45-year-old Toledo woman discovered a lump by chance in 2009 while scratching an itch on her ribs just beneath her breast.
But when the mammogram came back negative, her original doctor told her it was probably just a cyst and that she probably shouldn’t be too alarmed.
“He was really reluctant, and he didn’t push to get it looked at. I’m glad I didn’t listen,” Ms. Paskvan said.
She had an ultrasound that showed a 2-centimeter growth, and she insisted that he take a biopsy of the growth immediately.
Two days later, the lab confirmed her suspicion that the mass was cancerous.
Ms. Paskvan soon learned that she was suffering from a very rare, aggressive form of breast cancer called Triple Negative Breast Cancer.
“I knew there was something there. I had a gut feeling. You have to be an advocate for your own body,” she said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 206,966 women in the United States were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010.
About 15 to 20 percent of all breast cancers are triple negative, said Dr. Iman Mohamed, chief of the division of hematology and oncology at the University of Toledo Medical Center, the former Medical College of Ohio.
In the Toledo area, about 94 women a year are diagnosed with this unique form of breast cancer.
“It is the one type of breast cancer that is not driven by hormones. It’s a cancer that doesn’t really have a target for treatment. It does respond to chemotherapy, but it tends to come back earlier,” Dr. Mohamed said.
Because it is not hormone-driven, it is a type of cancer that does not respond to the drugs given to other breast cancer patients after they complete chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
She added that this type of cancer also tends to strike younger women and African-American women disproportionately.
“This is all genetic. You can trace it back to where African-Americans started in Africa — in Nigeria, Ghana — and the variety that they have there is exactly the variety of Triple Negative Breast Cancer here,” she said.
Dr. Mohamed was the organizer of a special event at UTMC on Monday dedicated to increasing awareness about this specific form of breast cancer.
She only recently learned herself that March 3 has been designated as Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day nationally.
The event, “A Different Shade of Pink,” at the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center gave local cancer survivors an opportunity to come together and learn more about the newest treatments and services available to help them.
After Ms. Paskvan left her original doctor and started receiving treatment from Dr. Mohamed, they started a rigorous round of treatments to fight the cancer.
She had a lumpectomy, in which the doctors surgically removed the tumor two weeks after her diagnosis.
Then she started eight rounds of chemotherapy — one treatment per week, followed by 33 rounds of radiation treatment, she said.
Ms. Paskvan said she is doing well. She has moved on with her life and is making every moment count.
Dr. Mohamed said Ms. Paskvan has passed a critical threshold.
If it doesn’t return in the first two to three years after a patient completes treatments, “these women are probably cured,” Dr. Mohamed said.
“We are working on getting new therapies so even more woman survive,” she said. “I hope people walk out of this feeling more informed of this disease and the treatments available.”

Read more at https://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2014/03/04/Program-sheds-light-on-rare-cancer.html#cPmOUaOwGGv5cKqi.99

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

6 Things To Know About Triple Negative Breast Cancer (Infographic)


TNBC sister, Ann Pietrangelo had written an article published on Care2.com in regards to TNBCDay 3.3.2014 on some basic facts of Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC) . The point that Ann wanted to get across to her readers is that breast cancer is not a single disease. There are several subtypes of breast cancer with TNBC being aggressive and lacking in long term treatment.
Ann quoted me in her article on the positives of my TNBC journey:
"TNBC survivor Melissa Paskvan says, “I have met many amazing TNBC survivors throughout my journey that I consider as my extended family. We TNBC sisters, we ‘get it.’ We are a unique Sisterhood bonded by our uncommon disease and I embrace it.”
"Ms. Paskvan continues, “I keep fighting alongside those who are still fighting, those who are too weak to fight, and for those who can no longer fight. My fight is not over until all of my sisters are safe. Never lose sight of hope, hope to find our targeted therapy and hope for more tomorrows.”
Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/6-things-to-know-about-triple-negative-breast-cancer-infographic.html#ixzz2z0eCvWrM


Sunday, April 13, 2014

Triple Negative Breast Cancer 2014: Expert Perspectives


Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation and Medscape Oncology presents a guide for patients, Triple   Negative Breast Cancer 2014: Expert Perspectives.  This guide is based on an educational discussion on treatment strategies for TNBC by a panel of TNBC experts, Dr. Lisa Carey, Dr. Lisa Newman and Dr. Eric Wiener. Click on link to download:
http://www.tnbcfoundation.org/tnbc2014_expertsperspectives.pdf 

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