Archive for the ‘News’ Category

The Cold Cap: Keeping your Hair During Chemo

Posted By on April 15th, 2015 at 8:28 am | 184 comments.

chemo-cap-associated-press-for-plWhen it comes to the side effects of breast cancer treatment, many women fear losing their hair the most. A popular new process could stop that from happening. Cancer patients are opting for the chemo “cold cap.” What is it? It’s a cap you wear during treatment and a few hours after that freezes the scalp and stops hair from falling out.

A study at the University of California, San Francisco monitored 100 women who received chemotherapy and used a cooling cap.  Results have not been published, but studies did show that a majority of the women kept most of their hair.  How does it work? The cold cap reduces chemotherapy-induced alopecia (hair loss) by cooling the hair capillaries and reducing the metabolic rate of the hair follicles to a hibernated state, preventing the absorption of chemotherapeutic drugs into the hair bulbs of the scalp.

The process can be costly, averaging around $600 per month for rental of the caps.  Most insurers do not cover the cost, but there have been cases where cooling caps are covered in lieu of wig costs.

To read the complete New York Times article on chemo cooling caps, click here.

Join the conversation! Is anyone using the cold cap? WOULD you use one?  Follow the PBCC on Facebook and Twitter and let us know!

Expensive Prescriptions? Assistance Programs Available for Families

Posted By on March 16th, 2015 at 8:36 am | 138 comments.

prescription-helpMany pharmaceutical companies offer Patient Assistance Programs for the prescription medications they manufacture. Patients who are uninsured or underinsured may qualify to receive free or discounted drugs for breast cancer treatment and other family medical needs. Needy Meds provides a user-friendly list of the companies’ assistance programs with details about how to apply.

On the Needy Meds website, search by the name of your prescription medication to see if an assistance program is offered.  Also, Pennsylvania’s prescription assistance programs for older adults, PACE, PACENET and PACE plus Medicare, offer low-cost prescription medication to qualified residents, age 65 and older. For more information, call the PA Department of Aging at 1-800-225-7223.

Dense Breast Tissue: What to Know. What to Do.

Posted By on February 16th, 2015 at 8:31 am | 85 comments.

patheadshotforplWe all have a responsibility to educate, support and care for each other. I’ve met and talked with so many women who tell me similar stories – they have dense breast tissue, didn’t know it and were diagnosed at a later, less-treatable stage. We’re working to ensure no other woman has that same story to tell.

The PBCC hopes to gather information from mammography centers where women receive their mammograms. We’ve developed a 12-question survey to learn more about what mammography centers need to notify women of their breast density. Are you a breast imaging professional? Will you help us with this email survey?

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Answers to the short survey will make a BIG difference! Gathering this information is vital as we move forward, informing and educating women about breast density. Thank you for turning advocacy into action!

Dr. Eugene Glavin, Medical Director for Women’s Imaging at Good Samaritan Health System explains why it’s important for mammography centers to share information.

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Welcome New Honorary Chair First Lady Frances Wolf!

Posted By on February 16th, 2015 at 8:30 am | 140 comments.

FrancesWolfforPLThe PA Breast Cancer Coalition is proud to announce that First Lady Frances Donnelly Wolf will serve as the PBCC’s Honorary Chair. A resident of York County, Mrs. Wolf is an accomplished artist, dedicated to community involvement and engagement.
“Thousands of Pennsylvania women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year,” said Mrs. Wolf. “I am honored by the opportunity to work with the PA Breast Cancer Coalition, which fights every day to give these women and their loved ones hope.”

“We are delighted and extremely grateful that Mrs. Wolf shares our passion for helping breast cancer survivors, families, researchers and advocates in Pennsylvania. Her involvement continues a wonderful tradition and partnership with Pennsylvania’s first ladies,” said Pat Halpin-Murphy, president and founder of the PA Breast Cancer Coalition. “The PA Breast Cancer Coalition is excited for the opportunity to work with our new first lady towards our goal of finding a cure for breast cancer now… so our daughters won’t have to.”
Mrs. Wolf, the daughter of a U.S. diplomat, was born in New York City and raised all over the world in Iran, Germany, France, Pakistan and England. The first lady has earned degrees from the University of London and Franklin and Marshall College. Mrs. Wolf also holds a master’s degree from Bryn Mawr College. Her artwork has been exhibited in numerous shows including the Lancaster Museum of Art, York College of Pennsylvania and the Artists’ House Gallery in Philadelphia.
The First Lady and Governor Tom Wolf have played an integral role in the rejuvenation of downtown York over the years. She served on the board of York’s community foundation from 2005 to 2010. Mrs. Wolf is also a vice chair of the Board of Trustees as her alma mater, Franklin and Marshall College.
Governor and Mrs. Wolf have been married for 39 years. They have two daughters, Sarah and Katie.
Welcome, First Lady Frances Wolf!

Breast Cancer Death Rates Decline Drastically Over 20 Years

Posted By on February 16th, 2015 at 8:29 am | 148 comments.

Breast-Cancer-Survival-for-PLIn the past 20 years, breast cancer death rates have dropped dramatically.  According to the latest government statistics, breast cancer deaths decreased by 34 percent between 1990 and 2011 and experts believe that number has continued to drop over the past 4 years.  Why the decrease?

Researchers say death rates from breast cancer have declined due to better treatment, greater awareness, and more women getting mammograms.  New medicines in the past 20 years, such as targeted chemotherapy and Tamoxifen, have contributed to increasing breast cancer survival.  Today, there is an increasing trend toward individualized medicine as doctors learn more about tumors and the effectiveness of personalized medicine.  Additionally in the past 20 years, more women are becoming aware of the disease and are going to the doctors when something seems suspicious.  Many are hopeful that this downward trend will continue and even more women will survive a breast cancer diagnosis.

Click here to read the full article.

Free Program Offers Support, Guidance to Children with Loved Ones Battling Cancer

Posted By on February 16th, 2015 at 8:28 am | 124 comments.

CLIMB-programCLIMB® (Children’s Lives Include Moments of Bravery) is a FREE program offered by Penn State Hershey Medical Center  and designed to help children cope when someone they love has cancer. Sessions are held over four successive Wednesday evenings and are facilitated by a health care provider trained in caring for families of cancer patients. CLIMB® is open to children between the ages of 5 and 13. Registration ends Feb. 17!

Participants will gain new understanding of cancer and its treatment, and bond with others their age going through the same thing.
WHERE:  Penn State Hershey Breast Center
WHEN:    February 18th, February 25th, March 4th and March 11th
6:00 to 8:00 p.m. with dinner provided
To register, call Nicole Cook or Lynn Fantom at 717-531-7492 or email ncook@hmc.psu.edu.
For more information, click here 

11.20.14: Join the PBCC for a Major Breast Cancer Research Announcement

Posted By on November 14th, 2014 at 7:56 am | 7913 comments.

Pat HeadshotBy Pat Halpin-Murphy, President & Founder

The PA Breast Cancer Coalition is dedicated to finding a cure for breast cancer. To make that happen, we support researchers in Pennsylvania working every day to investigate the cause, improve treatment and ultimately find the cure for breast cancer. You’re invited to join us Thursday, November 20 at 10:30am at Penn State Hershey Medical Center as we make a major announcement of support for a breast cancer breakthrough right here in our backyard.

The announcement will be made in Penn State Hershey’s 2nd floor Media Center. Attendees can access the room through the main hospital entrance.

We hope you will be there as we move forward in our fight to end breast cancer together.

Be there… be part of history!

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67 Women, 67 Counties Exhibit Visits Centre, Fayette Communities

Posted By on November 14th, 2014 at 7:55 am | 10266 comments.

lisa-rose-speaking-at-fayetteThis fall, the PBCC’s traveling photo exhibit 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania returned to Centre County and made its first appearance in Fayette County. Mount Nittany Medical Center’s Lance and Ellen Shaner Cancer Pavilion hosted the exhibit in Centre County. In Fayette, the exhibit traveled to Penn State University’s Eberly Campus. Survivors from both communities told their stories of hope and inspiration, sharing the importance of early detection.

Thank you to the committees in Centre and Fayette Counties for welcoming the PBCC and this important exhibit to your communities, and special thanks to the PA Department of Health for its continued support of 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania.

Click on the video below for a message from survivors in Centre and Fayette Counties:

Survivors-and-Staff