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02 Feb 2012 20:07


Politics: Susan G. Komen for the Cure backlash intensifies as controversy grows

  • Susan Komen would not give in to bullies or fear. Too bad the foundation bearing her name did.
  • Writer Judy Blume • Discussing the decision by Susan G. Komen for the Cure to cut off its funding to Planned Parenthood, because the organization was under investigation by a governmental organization — a decision met with much frustration and derision from Komen critics, who saw it as a transparent push to move away from a group associated with abortions, though associated with many other things. This has not been a banner day for the Komen foundation, which has raised $1.9 billion for breast cancer research and programs, but may have hurt its long-term reputation with the move — founder Nancy Brinker (whose sister was Susan G. Komen) was grilled by Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC today over the change. With word flying that the group changed its rules to specifically target Planned Parenthood (the “governmental organization” is Rep. Cliff Stearns, a noted anti-abortion activist) and an alleged shift to the right among its staff, activists feel that, with this move, the organization is politicizing a cause that otherwise has wide support. Thoughts? source

01 Feb 2012 20:45


Politics: Susan G. Komen foundation cuts funding to Planned Parenthood

  • the change The Susan G. Komen foundation, the most prominent breast cancer awareness group in the United States, has halted funding for Planned Parenthood. They had been major funders, paying nearly $700,000 in cancer screenings and preventive care in 2011 alone.
  • the reason According to the Komen foundation, internal rules prohibit them from granting funds to a group under investigation; Planned Parenthood is, by Florida Rep. Cliff Stearns. Komen defended itself on Facebook, saying the decision was “not about politics.” source

18 Nov 2011 13:04


U.S.: FDA decides against blockbuster breast-cancer drug Avastin

  • what A blockbuster drug for breast cancer, Avastin, lost its FDA approval to be used for that particular purpose. (It will remain on the market as a cancer drug for other uses — including colon cancer — and Medicare will still cover it for breast cancer usage.)
  • why Multiple studies have shown that the drug only helps shrink tumors a little bit, and the side effects don’t make up for that benefit, the FDA decided. The decision means that many insurance providers will likely no longer cover the drug, which is very expensive. source

13 Nov 2011 11:44


Culture: RIP Evelyn Lauder: Cosmetics executive, cancer awareness hero

  • 1992 Estee Lauder cosmetics company executive Evelyn Lauder worked on a project to raise awareness of breast cancer among women. It started small — with little pink ribbons handed out at department store makeup conters — before eventually moving into fundraising.
  • 2011 Lauder died Saturday at age 75, but not before that little project grew into something massive. With October designated as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the campaign has raised $330 million in less than 20 years. Lauder’s little idea made a huge mark. source

07 Sep 2011 17:31


Politics: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reveals she has breast cancer

  • I had planned to be hiking in Wyoming last week, but instead discovered that I am now among the 1 in 8 women in this country — incredibly 1 in 8 — who have had breast cancer.
  • NBC chief foreign affairs correspondent Andrea Mitchell • Making her diagnosis public on her MSNBC show Andrea Mitchell Reports. She says her prognosis for recovery is “terrific,” as the cancer was detected in a very early stage, and her subsequent advocacy for cancer screenings is worth taking to heart: “…screening matters. Do it. This disease can be completely curable if you find it at the right time.” source

30 Jun 2011 14:05


U.S.: FDA decides against controversial breast cancer drug

  • 6-0 vote to take the breast cancer indication off Avastin source
  • » Even though lots of people liked the drug, the FDA has decided that it shouldn’t be used to treat breast cancer. However, European regulators allowed its use (as long as it was with another drug) at essentially the same time — which begs the question, why would the FDA be taking a drug off the market that so many people felt so passionate about?

28 Jun 2011 13:50


U.S.: Cancer drug might not be around much longer

  • Avastin saved my life…The studies are saying, they’re saying that people didn’t live for more than five months, you know. And there has to be other people like me that it works on.
  • Kerry Harrington, a breast cancer survivor • Arguing for the case for Avastin, a drug still being tested that treats breast cancer. The drug received accelerated approval for treating breast cancer, but now the FDA is backing away from allowing the drug for breast cancer treatment. This is mainly because Avastin has some pretty horrible side effects, like heart attacks and kidney damage. Many women are saying that the pros outweigh the cons — they’d rather deal with the side effects and know they’re treating their cancer. The FDA will decide after they hear testimony from patients and review other official data. source

05 Jun 2011 13:16


U.S.: Breast cancer trial: At-risk patients helped by new drug

  • 65% decreased risk after taking hormone-blocking pill source
  • » A huge step forward: The study, which involved 4,500 people, represents progress towards a safe-to-take drug that prevents breast cancer in at-risk patients. While anti-estrogen drugs already exist on the market, they’ve had pretty horrific side effects that discourage their use. So far, aromatase inhibitors don’t have any of these side effects — but it’s important to note that there haven’t been long-term studies with this, either. (This is the first time researchers tested an aromatase inhibitor tested clinically.) However, it’s still encouraging and worth keeping an eye on.

12 Apr 2011 17:06


Politics: A win for breast cancer awareness in schools

  • NO school can’t ban anti-cancer “I (heart) boobies” bracelets source
  • » And for the ACLU, there was much rejoicing: The American Civil Liberties Union had taken on the case of two middle school girls suspended from school for wearing breast cancer awareness bracelets with “I (heart) boobies” written on them. In a preliminary ruling, federal judge Mary McLaughlin said they “can reasonably be viewed as speech designed to raise awareness of breast cancer and to reduce stigma associated with openly discussing breast health.”

07 Dec 2010 21:21


Culture: Elizabeth Edwards: During the worst of times, she found silver lining

  • It was that attitude we’re going to always look for the silver lining. It is who we are as people and we’ll continue to do it.
  • Elizabeth Edwards • Speaking in 2007 about her breast cancer, which eventually led to her death this morning. Maybe some of this goes into ploy territory, but the fact of the matter is, Edwards worked 16-hour days while taking chemotherapy pills during her now-estranged husband’s campaign – after which, things got even worse in her personal life. A woman who has had this much bad stuff happen to her, while still looking for that silver lining, isn’t a victim. She’s a hero. Remember that, guys. source