Summerâ€™s over. Schoolâ€™s started. And inside the breast cancer community, there is pink on the horizon as we try to take advantage of the one month the media has given usâ€¦.October: Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
For me, this means I am gearing up for a lot of travel around the country talking about the new edition of the Breast Book and, even more importantly, the urgent need to change the direction of breast cancer research.Â The watchword this season seems to be â€œpersonalized medicine,â€ meaning that not all cancers are the same and the treatment should match the tumor. While this represents an important shift from â€œone size fits all,â€ it still means that many women will get, be treated for, and sometimes still die from breast cancer!
What we at the Foundation keep asking is why not focus on finding the cause of the disease so we can prevent it!Â That message isnâ€™t as popular as the pharmaceutical/medical/scientific establishmentâ€™s message.Â But that doesnâ€™t stop usâ€”and we know it doesnâ€™t stop you!Â And we need YOUR help to push this message forward, because we canâ€™t make progress in ending breast cancer without your support.
So many people say: It is too hard to find the cause, itâ€™s too complicated, cancer will always be with us.Â Baloney! Iâ€™m in a hurry to end breast cancer and I believe that the road that will get us there requires us to undertake the big risk projects that have the potential for big rewards. Not surprisingly, these arenâ€™t the types of projects that funders are eager to support. But I donâ€™t want to do studies that will help us to find a new type of chemotherapy that will be just a bit better than what we have. I want to figure out what causes breast cancerâ€”and how to end it. And thatâ€™s what sets us apart. We have been at the forefront of shifting the research paradigm. We have:
- Launched the Army of Women, an initiative to recruit one million women interested in taking part in the research studies that will help us understand what causes breast cancerâ€”and how to prevent it.
- Created the Health of Women (HOW) Study the first ever online study of an anticipated one million women that will follow women for the next 15-20 years and look at potentially new risk factors for breast cancer in order to understand the cause of the disease and ways to prevent it.
- Pioneered research into understanding the anatomy of the breast so that we can understand how breast cancer begins. Can you believe that we understand the molecular biology of cancer better than we do the anatomy of the breast?!?!
- Bucked trends and regularly questioned the status quo.
This is work that matters. And the key factor in getting it done is you. Thatâ€™s why Iâ€™m asking that when the pink haze comes over the land and you think about which organizations to support this Breast Cancer Awareness month, you think about what sets the Foundation apartâ€”and the difference your support can make.
Every dollar counts and we need your support more than ever.
Your donation to the Foundation will fuel the work we are doing to bring us to the end of this disease. We couldnâ€™t have accomplished all that we have without you! Please help us keep moving down the risky path that will bring the big rewardâ€”ending this disease.
PS â€“ Iâ€™m excited to let you know that the fully updated 5th edition of Dr. Susan Loveâ€™s Breast Book is now available! And if you order it through this link, Amazon.com will donate part of the purchase price to the Foundation!