Are Breast Cancer Survivors More Prone To Heart Disease In The Future?

It’s a difficult possibility to comprehend: all that work to fight and win against one of the scariest cancers in existence, and now there’s a lower life expectancy because of heart disease? Scientists say that medically combating breast cancer is a delicate balance of treatments, some of which are dangerous. New studies indicate that some of a woman’s options may result in complications at some point down the road.

Here’s the good news: research and development has tipped the scales in favor of survival. If you’re diagnosed with breast cancer, you’re more likely to survive than you are to succumb to it.

Unfortunately for postmenopausal women who have breast cancer (that’s a pretty big demographic as far as breast cancer patients are concerned), they’re more likely to develop heart disease, which is already ahead of cancer in terms of being the leading cause of death for women who are postmenopausal. Part of the reason is the radiation exposure that often occurs during breast cancer treatment.

Those who are exposed to radiation as part of their treatment are likely to experience these disastrous side effects up to thirty years later, and in as little as five.

But that’s not all.

Postmenopausal breast cancer survivors are also more likely to experience diabetes, atherosclerosis, metabolic syndrome, abdominal obesity, and hypertriglyceridemia. All of these are additional risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

North American Menopause Society (NAMS) Executive Director Dr. JoAnn Pinkerton says, “Heart disease appears more commonly in women treated for breast cancer because of the toxicities of chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and use of aromatase inhibitors, which lower estrogen. Heart-healthy lifestyle modifications will decrease both the risk of recurrent breast cancer and the risk of developing heart disease…Women should schedule a cardiology consultation when breast cancer is diagnosed and continue with ongoing follow-up after cancer treatments are completed.”

Both diseases are more likely among individuals who are obese or smoke. Those who are at risk due to these factors should make eliminating them an important part of daily routine.

For these reasons, it is important for women to ensure that routine breast cancer screenings are conducted. Women should continue to speak to health care providers about the best potential breast cancer treatment when diagnosed, and ask about those that have a detrimental effect on health in the future. For some, there are alternative treatments without so many of the adverse impacts on health.

A decade from now, it’s possible that we’ll be able to cure or eliminate breast cancer through cutting edge immunotherapies!

FDA Approves 1st Immunotherapy Breast Cancer Drug

On March 8th, The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted accelerated approval to an immunotherapy regimen for breast cancer. The regimen includes a combination of the immunotherapy drug Tecentriq and the chemotherapy Abraxane. The regimen is for a specific type of breast cancer known as triple negative breast cancer which means that it has the following three conditions:

  1. It is locally advanced or metastatic
  2. It cannot be surgically removed
  3. The cells contain a protein called PD-L1

The FDA’s decision is based on a groundbreaking study done by Genetech Inc and published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The study found that people who took the immunotherapy drug in conjunction with chemotherapy versus those who took just the placebo with chemotherapy had a higher progression-free survival (the amount of time in which a patient’s cancer does not get worse). For those on the drug, their progression-free survival averaged around 7.4 months versus those on chemo alone whose progression-free survival averaged 4.8 months.

While the study has shown that it prevents cancer from getting worse but it doesn’t treat cancer. The FDA only grants accelerated approval on drugs that “treat serious conditions that fill an unmet medical need.” Genetech, the manufacturers of Tecentriq are required to do more clinical trials to show that the drug is still beneficial. Otherwise, the FDA has the right to pull the drug.

About 15% of all breast cancers reported are triple negative. It is usually found in women who between the ages of 40 and 50 and are of Hispanic and African descent but can also be found with women who have the BRCA1 gene mutation.

The drug is not meant to be used on its own yet, as the chemotherapy helps the drug be effective. Cancer cells are hard to treat because the body’s immune system does not recognize them as a foreign object (i.e. like bacteria or virus). The PD-L1 protein fools the immune system into thinking it is part of the body. Tecentriq attaches to the cancer cell and deactivates the PD-L1 protein, allowing the body’s immune system to naturally fight the cell. However, without chemotherapy, the Tecentriq cannot get to the protein inside the cancer cell.

What Kind Of Quality Of Life Can Breast Cancer Patients Expect?

One of the scariest parts of any type of cancer is expectation. No one needs that kind of stress, and the unknown always represents one of the biggest stressors any of us will ever experience. That said, expectation is often different from reality. How does the quality of life for breast cancer patients change after diagnosis? How does it change if the patient survives past five years?

Quality of life means a lot. It can be used to describe your productivity, your physical and mental health or wellbeing, your sexual function, and the symptoms or side effects from medications. The quality of life for breast cancer patients is reportedly good when compared to other forms of cancer. Most of the discomfort will likely stem from treatment. Many women will face symptoms they’re already familiar with from menopause. Hot flashes and fatigue are common. Women may also struggle with chronic pain in the breasts.

Many breast cancer patients report having renewed faith or spirituality, and a better outlook on life. Even for those whose time has been cut short, many seem to make the most of it.

Others experience anger and grief, sometimes uncontrollable, especially after a round of chemotherapy. Those who have only recently been diagnosed with breast cancer are more likely to experience depression, panic, anxiety, shock, fear, or overwhelming sadness. All of these can adversely affect not only quality of life, but also overall outlook or prognosis. In order to survive, a positive outlook will help.

Those who survive often feel the need to help prevent or fight against future breast cancer cases. They join the greater community to help provide help for outreach, fundraisers, or other forms of advocacy.

Many survivors continue to live life with renewed vigor, but make fewer lifestyle changes than you might think. Many survivors had already been living healthy lifestyles before the cancer took hold and came to realize that sometimes the worst happens even if you do everything right beforehand.

Survivors are often prone to sequelae, or a number of infections and inflammatory forms of arthritis that can greatly diminish quality of life. The problem is often not assessed or managed properly, and more must be done to raise awareness for this post-cancer problem.

Breast Cancer: What You Didn’t Think To Watch Out For

All kinds of cancer are terrifying, but breast cancer is unique in that it affects women at a greater rate than all other cancers combined. Prognosis is good so long as early detection was achieved, but this can be difficult because not all women know how to properly self-examine their breasts.

Those who do don’t always do it as often as they should. If a sign or symptom slips past your radar, you could be in big trouble. Here are some typical signs of breast cancer that might not concern you right away.

  1. Your breasts might become scaly, and the skin might become comparable to that of an orange. This is most common in the skin around the nipple. If you notice oddly-shaped ridges along the nipple, it’s time to visit a doctor. 
  2. Your breasts might show signs of shrinking. Cancer often presents on only one side at first, and so you might only notice a single breast getting smaller. A tiny change in size isn’t a big deal–it’s actually quite common because of the tissue inside the breast–but major changes in size are more cause for concern. 
  3. If your nipple is an outie (hint: most are) and suddenly becomes an innie, then there might be a problem. When cancer causes fluctuations in the tissues inside of your breast, it might cause your nipple to turn inward during a reshaping transition. Get it checked out if you notice this change. 
  4. If you notice a dimple on your breast, go to a doctor immediately. Even the tiniest, most unobtrusive dimple may be a sign of breast cancer. 
  5. If you’re not one who’s accustomed to scaly skin as part of a condition, then there might be something else causing the dry skin. If the skin is itchy, irritated, or swollen, get it checked out. 
  6. More obvious is a change in size or a discharge from the nipple, but it’s important to remember that not all symptoms will present with pain–and pain is usually what sends people to the doctor more often. If your breasts seem at all unusual, it’s not something to ignore. You won’t always find a lump, but that shouldn’t stop you from taking a trip to see your doctor. Better safe than sorry!

Defining Sexual Harassment

According to New Jersey Employment Attorneys Lenzo & Reis, sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances or requests for specific sexual favors, including physical and verbal conduct of a sexual nature.

Sexual harassment is something covered by a number of laws. Rules apply mostly to places of employment, but it’s not always an employee to employee matter, as it can also involve contractors, visitors, and even customers.

In general, there are two primary kinds of sexual harassment that women sadly experience. The first is classified as hostile environment. The other is known as ‘quid pro quo’.

The hostile environment style of sexual harassment happens when the unwelcome conduct of any sexual nature instigates a working environment that is abusive, threatening, or intimidating to the point of it impacting someone’s ability to work. Cases or patterns of persistent, severe, and pervasive behavior often happen from someone is a power of authority above the harassment victim, but it can also happen on a peer level too. In some instances, a subordinate might harass their superior.

Quid pro quo is Latin, and it translates to ‘this for that’. This kind of sexual harassment happens when it is either implied or outright stated that a decision regarding an employee will depend on whether or not the employee submits to something sexual in nature. Quid pro quo forms of sexual harassment also happen when it’s either implied or stated that a customer has to submit to something of a sexual nature just to get a job in the first place. For instance, a recruiter might imply a job offer would only be made if a candidate goes on a date with them.

The idea of the conduct of any sexual nature can seem very broad and confusing, so it’s helpful to know specific descriptions and examples. The following three categories don’t cover everything, but they give you a good idea of what you should avoid doing yourself and not put up with if they happen to you:

1) Unwanted Sexual Statements: These can be dirty jokes, sexual jokes, spreading rumors about a person’s sex life or performance, talking about your own in front of others, displaying explicit images or written material, and commenting on someone’s physical attributes. This can all happen in person, online, electronically, over the phone, or even in writing.

2) Unwanted Individual Attention: Pressure for sexual favors or undesired personal interaction or dates of a romantic intent can happen through visits, phone calls, letters, and electronic communication.

3) Unwanted Sexual Or Physical Advances: Sexual assault and actual intercourse should be obvious, but other specifics include unwanted fondling, kissing, hugging, touching, or even just touching oneself in a sexual way for others to see.

Newest Trend: Toothpaste To Tighten and Enhance Breasts

Yes, you read that right. You do not need a criminal lawyer Odessa. The latest beauty craze is using toothpaste to tighten and enlarge breasts.

YouTuber vlogger NaturalBeauty556 produced a video where she demonstrated over a 6 day period how by using a special blend of toothpaste, cucumber, yogurt, flour, and egg whites can help reduce sagging breasts. Just rub it all over. You can watch it below:

Another YouTuber Zonelyn TV admitted to putting toothpaste on her nipples and vasoline on the rest of her breast in order to grow her cup size. 30 days needed for maximum results.

And while we will admit that we have used toothpaste to dry out some pimples, but we have to call a spade a spade and go with this is definitely not going to work. And luckily experts agree with us.

Expert Christopher Inglefield who is currently the medical director of the London Bridge Plastic Surgery and Aesthetic Clinic says, “The toothpaste will do little more than leave boobs smelling minty fresh” continue that this method is “pure online quackery”.

For those looking to make their breasts bigger without having to go under the knife should try a different method like exercising to increase breast muscles like pushups and chest dips coupled with eating foods and herbs that boost estrogen such as fennel.

Breastfeeding Complications To Look Out For

Breastfeeding is one of the best things you can do for your baby and it gives your child all the nutrients that are needed to thrive. While breastfeeding is more work than feeding powdered formula, the extra time you take to breastfeed your child is going to be worth it. It can be a great experience for you and your child. It takes a while to get used to breastfeeding and many women develop complications in the beginning. Read on to learn about some of the complications that can happen when you breastfeed.

One of the most common breastfeeding problems is sore nipples. Your nipples can also start to crack. This problem tends to happen early on and it happens when your baby has trouble latching on which is very common. You can soothe your nipples with a special cream and if your baby keeps having trouble latching on you can get advice from your doctor. Sore nipples can be frustrating because you are less likely to want to keep breastfeeding if it is painful.

Another common breastfeeding problem is not producing enough milk. Make sure that you feed your baby from both breasts. Feeding your baby skin to skin can stimulate your body to make more milk. Most women produce enough milk even when they feel like they aren’t, so relax and enjoy the breastfeeding experience.

A more common problem is producing too much milk. When you produce too much milk your breasts become too full and they can feel hard and tight. You can use a breast pump to pump out the extra milk and relieve the pressure on your breasts. If your breasts stay full of milk for too long, you can end up with mastitis which is an infection of the milk ducts. Engorgement can be very painful and you want to try to avoid having this happen.

It can take a while for your baby to learn to latch on properly and while your baby is learning, you are going to feel pain. You might result with thrush which is common when your nipples crack. The thrush infection can pass to your baby and you will have to get medication to treat it. Sometimes a milk duct will become blocked. If you feel a tender small lump, you could have a blocked duct. Try to have your baby feed more on that breast to open the duct.

Tips to get Through Chemotherapy

If you are planning to start chemotherapy, you might be freaking out with what you have heard or read about the therapy. But you should remember that a lot of individuals have braved this path before you and many more are likely to follow. Here are some important tips for getting through chemotherapy.

It is true that chemotherapy is scary. But it is not poison when you are suffering from cancer. In fact, you may feel anger, frustration, fear, and whatever emotions when you have to undergo chemotherapy. Don’t avoid these feelings. These are only feelings after all. You should allow these feelings to take their course before you avail yourself for therapy. Once you have felt these emotions, you will be at peace with yourself – which will help you go through the treatment without much of a fuss.

On the other hand, chemo is not poison in any way. In fact, it is your lifesaving elixir when you are suffering from cancer. If someone refers to chemotherapy as poison in your presence, you should remind him/her what it really is. The right mentality can help save a lot of headaches when you have to undergo chemotherapy. That is why you need to have a positive mentality with regards to chemotherapy.

There is an hour-long education session that is mandatory when taking chemotherapy. You shouldn’t take this information too deeply since it can really scare you off. But you shouldn’t ignore it altogether since you have to know the risks involved in the process. In the United States, the doctor has to tell his/her patient everything about the procedure in order to avoid a medical malpractice lawsuit. But it doesn’t mean that all the side effects of chemotherapy are going to happen to you. Listen to what your doctor tells but don’t take it too seriously.

Let go of your worries over the chemotherapy process. Indulging continuously in your worries will aggravate the situation. Today, men, women, and children are getting chemotherapy all over the world. You will definitely get through the process if you stop worrying too much. Last but not least, you are bound to lose your hair during the chemotherapy process. But it will grow back once the process is completed.

If you have been misdiagnosed or your diagnosis had been delayed, you should contact a medical malpractice attorney immediately. You may be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering.

Vitamin D Linked To Decrease In Breast Cancer Risk, New Study Reports

Vitamin D often labeled as “wonder nutrient” is capable of decreasing a person’s risk of different types of cancer. New research shows that people with high levels of Vitamin D in their bloodstream have a significantly lower risk of breast cancer.

Vitamin D has been the subject in many medical studies over the past few years with many debates from professionals on whether or not the vitamin impacts our overall health.

Earlier this year studies show that low levels of the vitamin have been associated with a higher risk of bladder cancer and bowel cancer. Previous studies have also shown a connection between high vitamin D levels and breast cancer survival rates.

Researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine in conjunction with Creighton University, Medical University of South Carolina, and the non profit organization GrassrootsHealth published the results of their study that are available here: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0199265 Their research suggests that certain levels of Vitamin D correlate with a markedly lower risk of breast cancer.

The participants of the study were women aged 63 who were cancer-free at baseline. The study took place over the years 2002 to 2017. They found that in their test subjects 77 cases of cancers were noted. However the national average is 512. Therefore, people with higher blood concentrations of vitamin D have a much lower risk of developing breast cancer.

However, the amount of Vitamin D found in the blood system of their patients – 60 nanograms per milliliter is way above the recommended amount by the National Academy of Medicine which is only 20 nanograms per milliliter.

The Vitamin D increase was effective regardless of other variables such as age, body mass index, smoking habits and calcium intake. However more research is done before people begin to increase their Vitamin D intake.

Did You Know That There 7 Boob Shapes?

You know the saying that you learn something new every day. Well, today I learned that there are several different boob shapes. Not only that, each boob shape requires a different style of bra. This has been life changing for me. However, the more I look at the different shapes the more I realized I am a combo.

So which boob shape are you? Do you fit more than one category?

Round Breasts
East West
Side Set
Bell Shape
Slender
Asymmetric
Tear Drop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Boob Shapes Explained

Round: These are the lucky ones that don’t need cups or padded bras. Their boobs are naturally round on the top and bottom.

East West: This reminds me of the two-headed monster from sesame street who would point in opposite directions, except if that two-headed monster was your nipples. A good candidate for the push-up bra.

Side Set: This is very similar to the East West but there’s a larger space between the boobs. The boobs might be fuller like the round shape but just spread apart more.

Tear Drop: Similar to round, these are full on the bottom but flat on the top. These types of boob can fit in many different bra styles.

Asymmetric: I am without a doubt asymmetric. My left boob is much bigger than my right boob. This makes it difficult to find bras that fit both cups correctly. However, experts recommend a cleave control bra where I can adjust each breast side separately. Excuse me while I go buy new bras.

Slender: These boobs are longer than they are wide. A bra with a lot of padding will make the boobs look fuller.

Bell Shape: These boobs are also longer than they are wide but are in a fuller cup size than that of slender shaped. They usually require bras that have a lot of support.