Archive for February, 2013

7th Annual Pink Zone at Penn State Empowers Survivors Across Pennsylvania

Posted By on February 28th, 2013 at 8:44 am | 539 comments.


There is no greater feeling than knowing you are not alone in this fight. That is exactly how hundreds of breast cancer survivors feel each year on the court at the annual Pennsylvania Pink Zone game at Penn State University’s Bryce Jordan Center. Pink Zone is inspirational, educational and FUN! The PA Breast Cancer Coalition would like to thank the Lady Lions, Mimi Barash Coppersmith, Miriam Powell, the Pink Zone staff and everyone who helped to make this year’s game a show-stopping success. We are honored to be one of the groups chosen to benefit from this amazing event. Click on the video above for highlights from the 2013 Pink Zone and take a look at some of our pictures on Facebook and Twitter. Thank You Pink Zone!


Congratulations Magistrate Judge Susan Schwab!

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:25 am | 3075 comments.

Ssan Schwab for PinkLinkThe PA Breast Cancer Coalition would like to congratulate breast cancer survivor and PBCC traveling photo exhibit participant Susan Schwab who was recently sworn in as the newest US Federal Magistrate Judge for the Middle District of PA. Congratulations Susan!

President’s Corner: 20 Years, 1 Goal

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:17 am | 180 comments.


Last Wednesday, the PA Breast Cancer Coalition staff honored breast cancer researcher Dr. Ramin Shiekhattar at The Wistar Institute in Philadelphia with our first $50,000 Refunds for Research grant of 2013 for his outstanding work with genetic mutations and their effects on the disease. Dr. Shiekhattar is one of many researchers right here in Pennsylvania whose breakthroughs could one day save millions of lives. This tax season, as we commemorate 20 years at the PBCC, we challenge you to join our goal of ending breast cancer.  We have committed to finding a cure.  Will you join us? Donate your state income tax refund to breast cancer research and every penny will help to make that goal a reality.

For a behind-the-scenes look at our tour of Dr. Shiekhattar’s lab, click on the video below.

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 Look for more from our other 2013 grant recipients in the months to come and please join us March 7th at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute as we honor Dr. Hannah Rabinowich!

Mercer County to Host PBCC Traveling Photo Exhibit

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:17 am | 1281 comments.

67 Women 67 CountiesThis celebration of life, courage, hope, and dignity will make its way to Mercer County next month.  Sharon Regional Health System hosts 67 Women, 67 Counties:  Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania between March 14 and March 23.  This will mark the exhibit’s first stop in 2013.

67 Women, 67 Counties, funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, shares words of encouragement and inspiration from hundreds of women in Pennsylvania who have lived with breast cancer.  The exhibit also urges women to learn about and practice early detection through yearly mammograms, monthly breast self-exams and annual clinical exams.  Please join us for an Evening Reception to kick-off the exhibit at Sharon Regional beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 14 inside the Diagnostic and Imaging Center.  We hope to see you there!

If you can’t make it to Mercer County, check out the rest of our upcoming exhibit sites here:



Free Treatment Online Course Educates PA

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:17 am | 539 comments.

Did you know we have FREE Treatment for breast cancer in Pennsylvania?  The PA Breast Cancer Coalition has set out to educate Pennsylvanians about the program through a FREE online course.  More than 1,700 nurses and social workers have already taken the course and earned free continuing education credits.  Everyone is welcome to go through the course on our Web site. Take the online course here.
woman on computer

Grassroots Partner: Lois Orange Ducoeur Breast Cancer Walk

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:17 am | 2446 comments.

kristen and charleroi walk organizersOver 350 walkers stepped out and filled the streets for the 9th Annual Lois Orange Ducoeur Breast Cancer Walk, hosted by the Mon Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce in Charleroi, Pa. The wonderful weather was the perfect setting for pink balloons to be released at the start of the walk in honor of the courage and strength of all breast cancer survivors. This year, the planning committee presented a check for $6,450 to the PA Breast Cancer Coalitionfrom the walk proceeds. Since 2010, this event has become a crucial part of the PBCC and has raised over $16,000 for our programs and services. Special thanks to Donna Angelo who coordinated the event and all of the volunteers, sponsors, vendors, and walkers who made it a huge success!

Photos can be found on their Facebook page:

Survivor Stories: Barbara Stuver, Mercer County

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:16 am | 958 comments.

Barbara StruverValentine’s Day 1995 I had a mammogram in the morning and went back to work at Werner Ladder Company. That afternoon, the facility called and asked me to come back to have another mammogram. Something wasn’t right, but I thought maybe it was something wrong with the equipment. But as it turned out, I had breast cancer in situ.

That night, my husband and I talked about what to do. His family had always used Cleveland Clinic and our son and daughter-in-law lived in Ohio so we arranged to go and chat with them about it. Our daughter-in-law is a nurse and by the time we got to their house, she had cleaned out a couple of libraries and had all kinds of information ready for us to look through. We studied for a whole day and then made an appointment at Cleveland Clinic. By March 27, I had made a decision. I had my left breast removed and had TRAM flap surgery for reconstruction. That was a more invasive type of surgery but I still felt I didn’t want anything foreign in my body. I thought using my own tissue would be a better way to go. I didn’t need to have chemo or radiation.

My husband, daughter, son and daughter-in-law, and my sister stood beside me and still do today.

When I went back to work and started living my normal life again, I found a support group and got involved with them.  I still go back to the support group periodically to talk with some of the members.  Donna Darcangelo, who started the support group, suggested my name to the PBCC to represent Mercer County in the traveling photo exhibit.

I always encourage other women to think about what is best for them, to talk with their doctors and their support people, but to follow their own hearts. Everyone is different. We have to believe that things are going to be better. A positive attitude is always very helpful.

Patient Advocacy Tip: Avva Health App

Posted By on February 18th, 2013 at 9:16 am | 1192 comments.

avva health app pic2The Avva app was created by a group of current and former Stanford and Harvard students working directly with breast cancer patients. The app can be used in one of two modes: screening mode, for all women who want to keep track of their mammogram screenings, and treatment mode, to help newly diagnosed breast cancer patients prepare for their doctor visits.

For Screening: You can set the app to remind you when the time for your next mammogram is approaching. After you have your mammogram, input the date into the app. If more than the recommended time goes by without a mammogram, the app will send you a weekly notification to remind you until you indicate that you’ve had the mammogram.

For Treatment: You can create a list of questions for your doctor, using suggestions based on your personal situation. During the visit, the app allows you to save typed notes or to create an audio recording of your conversation. Everything is saved to your phone so you can access it again at any time.

To download the app: