Archive for June, 2014

Homers, High Fives & Heart: Harrisburg Kicks Off 2014 Home Run Derby Season

Posted By on June 16th, 2014 at 8:48 am | 33 comments.

Pat-June-Derby-pres-corner-picHundreds of batters and volunteers packed Metro Bank Park this part Tuesday to Take a Swing Against Breast Cancer® with the PA Breast Cancer Coalition.  Home runs were recorded and thousands of dollars were raised to strengthen our support network for breast cancer survivors, their families and caregivers across the state.  Not to mention, we had a blast!

With the help of our volunteers, batters and sponsors, the PBCC is able to provide women with the resources and comfort they need at a most difficult time in their lives.  There’s still time to join us and make a difference!  Our next stop is Lancaster at the home of Barnstormers baseball on Saturday, June 21.  Derby season wraps up Saturday, August 23 at Jerry Uht Park in Erie.  Knock one out of the park with us as we Take a Swing Against Breast Cancer this summer.

For scores from the Harrisburg home run derby, click here.

To check out our photos from the Harrisburg Home Run Derby, click here.

IN THE NEWS: Watch video clips from our first derby of the year

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Bradford County Survivor Finds Inner “Iron Lady”

Posted By on June 16th, 2014 at 8:46 am | 67 comments.
Darci-Baird

Survivor Darci Baird smiles for a picture with her 2-year-old granddaughter Ava.

Darci Baird, Bradford County

Cancer is not a death sentence. I’ve learned that. The word is scary but it’s the word for a disease that can be beaten. You just have to face it, figure out your treatment plan, and go about the business of kicking cancer to the curb.

I was 49 years old in July 2009 when a routine mammogram found my breast cancer. I had a lumpectomy and then radiation and am now finishing up. This is my fifth year of taking Anastrazole (Arimidex).

I always thought I was strong but I learned just how strong I was, and how strong my faith was. I am 100% positive that I had the help of Christ to get me through breast cancer. I wouldn’t have come through without the prayers of so many people.
During one of my many office visits after diagnosis I saw some literature and I asked Helen Harshbarger if she thought the PBCC was worth my time. Helen said the PBCC is absolutely the grassroots organization you want to become connected to. I ordered a Friends Like Me care package for myself and getting all that wonderful information really solidified all the good things that Helen had told me.
Two years ago Robert Packer Hospital and Guthrie Healthcare were getting ready to host “67 Women 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania” and they asked me to help with that. That was a great experience.
About that time the movie Iron Lady about Margaret Thatcher came out. We decided to do a fundraiser with the theme that anyone who has survived breast cancer is an iron lady, so we put together the Iron Ladies Night Out. We had a commemorative stone inscribed for iron ladies past and present and laid it in front of the theatre in Sayre. We had the help and support of Marge Ross who runs the theatre and is a force of nature with a tremendous heart. I’m fortunate to live in such an awesome community.
My husband John was there by my side with whatever I needed, and my kids were too. Amanda and Tim are young adults but it’s still a shock when mom gets sick. My brother cooked for me even after I was back on my feet. Cancer can make the people around you feel so powerless, and I think that made him feel like he could do something.
My granddaughter Ava Rose Baird turned two years old in May and she is one of the reasons I fight so hard to help find a cure for breast cancer.

Study: Drug May Protect Fertility During Chemotherapy

Posted By on June 16th, 2014 at 8:46 am | 977 comments.

pregnant-womangreenResearchers at the Cleveland Clinic say they have found a drug that shows promise in protecting fertility among cancer survivors.  Goserelin, which is commonly used in hormonal therapies to treat breast and prostate cancers, is also used in fertility clinics to control ovulation.  How does it work?

According to this recent study, goserelin has been proven to prevent women from entering premature menopause that can be caused by chemotherapy.  Researchers found that women who were given goserelin injections along with chemotherapy had less ovarian failure and gave birth to more babies than women who only received chemotherapy.  Two years after starting chemotherapy, only 8% of women who received the monthly goserelin injections during chemotherapy experienced ovarian failure, compared to 22% of those with chemotherapy who did not receive the injections.  It was noted that this study only included women who had hormone-receptor-negative cancer, because many women with hormone-receptor-positive cancer typically receive the drug tamoxifen, which can cause a loss in menstruation.
Currently, the most common option for breast cancer patients to increase their chances of conceiving is to freeze their eggs, which is an invasive procedure that can cost $10,000+.  Once-a-month injections of goserelin during chemotherapy would serve as an alternative, costing about $500-$600 per shot.  Experts say, while the research shows positive results, the drug does come with side effects.  Survivors may experience a temporary postmenopausal state along with hot flashes and other symptoms.
There is some doubt among experts at the American Society of Clinical Oncology who say there is insufficient evidence that this approach is effective and “should not be relied on to preserve fertility.”
Still, scientists say they also noticed an unexpected finding of the study: women who received goserelin had a lower risk of dying after four years.   They say there is still not enough data to recommend this drug be used to treat cancer, but the results show goserelin will not worsen cancer outcomes if used to protect fertility.
To read the complete article in the New York Times, click here

FREE Summer Camp Open to PA Kids Affected by Cancer

Posted By on June 16th, 2014 at 8:45 am | 8 comments.

Camp-Kesem-picCamp Kesem, a summer camp for kids with a parent who has (or has had) cancer, is now accepting applications! The one-week sleep away camps are a chance for children ages 6-16 to have a fun-filled week and just be kids. Everything at Camp Kesem focuses on the goal of giving campers the best week of their lives, while providing the extra support and attention they need.

Camp Kesem empowers college student leaders nationwide to create free, FUN summer camps for children affected by a parent’s cancer.  There are two locations offered here in Pennsylvania:

Camp Kesem Central PA – Fort Washington
http://campkesem.org/centralpa/about-our-camp

Camp Kesem at UPenn – Philadelphia area
http://campkesem.org/upenn

Learn more about the Camp Kesem experience in the video below:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3cEDBQLhdSY#t=29

The “A Day at Camp” link provides an overview of a typical day your child might expect:
http://campkesem.org/parents-campers/a-day-at-camp

Stauffers of Kissel Hill Raises Thousands for Survivors at Pink Day

Posted By on June 16th, 2014 at 8:44 am | 34 comments.

Stauffers-Pic2Pink Day at Stauffers of Kissel Hill Garden Centers was a blossoming success as folks filed in to grab their gardening essentials on a beautiful spring day. At each of their 8 Central PA locations, Stauffers offered 2% of sales as a donation to the PBCC, gave away free watering cans to anyone who made a contribution, and held an employee bake-sale to raise money. In addition, PBCC staff and volunteers were on-hand to offer free resources, information and breast cancer materials. This year’s Pink Day raised an amazing $8,377.80!  The event at Stauffers has raised more than $24,000 since its inception in 2012!
Special thank you our friends at Stauffers of Kissel Hill for planting the seed and growing a great awareness event for the PBCC!

No Shortage of Homers at Harrisburg’s Take a Swing Against Breast Cancer Home Run Derby

Posted By on June 12th, 2014 at 9:16 am | 16 comments.
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Team Hakuna MaTaTa raised more than $3,600 for the PBCC!

The 7th annual Take a Swing Against Breast Cancer® Home Run Derby kicked off in Harrisburg at Metro Bank Park on June 10th with nearly 100 batters, countless volunteers, and a stadium full of supporters.

The fight against breast cancer was in full force with Team Hakuna MaTaTa raising $3,623, earning the title of Top Fundraiser!

Jody Roof Home Run Photo

Jody Roof shows off his 4 home run balls with his two biggest fans

Five talented batters were awarded for their high scores!  Jody Roof impressed with four home runs and a total score of 625 points; Burt Stormes knocked one out of the park and earned a total of 425 points; Bret Wagner also hit one homer and earned a total of 375 points; Brian Zellers racked up 375 points with two home run balls; and John Furlong rounded out our top five hitters with 350 points!

Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse also showed his support for breast cancer survivors in Pennsylvania by taking a few hits and sporting a Take a Swing Against Breast Cancer jersey!

Mayor Papenfuse

Harrisburg Mayor Eric Papenfuse and Derby Emcee Bob Hauer get ready to take a swing against breast cancer with PBCC President Pat Halpin-Murphy

One down and two to go!  The PBCC will be hosting two more Take a Swing Against Breast Cancer Home Run Derbies at Clipper Magazine Stadium in Lancaster on Saturday, June 21st and at Jerry Uht Park in Erie on Saturday, August 23rd.  Grab your friends and family to join us as we swing for the fences in an effort to find a cure for breast cancer now… so our daughters won’t have to.”

Check out all of our derby day photos on the PBCC Flickr page: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pbcc/

FREE Webinars Coming this Month

Posted By on June 2nd, 2014 at 10:56 am | 17 comments.

Webinar-Graphic-for-PinkLink     Ask the Expert!  The PA Breast Cancer Coalition will expand its educational programs and services this June with the launch of FREE Webinars for survivors and advocates. The first presentation, offered Tuesday, June 24 at 7:00pm, will be “Understanding Your Breast Cancer Reconstruction Options” hosted by Dr. Joseph Serletti, Chief of Plastic Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine.
Dr. Serletti plans to focus on the latest in breast and nipple reconstruction options as well as how to best prepare for surgery and post-operation recovery. He will also be available to answer questions during the webinar. Anyone interested in learning more about this topic is invited to join us for this unique educational opportunity, free of charge.

Click-here-to-register-button