Our welcome bag for “Newly Diagnosed Members”
The contents of this newly diagnosed member bag will allow you to gain some information about breast cancer, it can give you a little self "pick me up" with the goodies included and hopefully allow you to explore the things being a member of Pink Ribbon Girls can do for you!
Having been diagnosed with breast cancer, you are likely to have many questions about the changes that may be taking place in your breast. First, it is necessary to know the parts of the breast. Each breast has 15 to 20 sections, called lobes, which have smaller sections called lobules, the glands responsible for making milk.1 Lobes and lobules are joined by thin tubes called ducts. The breast also contains blood vessels and lymph vessels; they carry a fluid called lymph, which contains infection-fighting cells. Lymph vessels lead to tiny, bean-shaped organs called lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are found throughout the body, including under the arm, above the collarbone, and in the chest.
Alopecia: Hair loss.
Areola: The circular field of dark-colored skin surrounding the nipple.
Aspiration: The withdrawal of fluid or tissue from a cyst or tumor with a needle and syringe.
Axillary dissection: The removal of some of the lymph nodes in the armpit.
Biopsy: The removal of a sample of tissue or cells for microscopic diagnosis. Biopsy can be done as fine needle biopsy, aspiration biopsy, core needle biopsy, incisional biopsy, and excisional biopsy.
Breast Conservation: Breast cancer treatment involving removal of a malignant breast lump and a small margin of surrounding normal tissue. This is generally followed by radiation treatments to the breast. A separate incision is made for the axillary dissection.
Breast Implant: An “envelope” containing silicone, saline, or both, used to restore breast form.
Breast Prosthesis: An artificial breast form that can be worn under clothing after a mastectomy.
Breast Self Examination (BSE): BSE is a method used by women to become familiar with the normal appearance and feel of their breast tissue, so that if a change occurs it will be detected early.
Chemotherapy: Treatment with drugs to destroy cancer cells. This is the most often used supplement to surgery and/or radiation therapy.
Clinical Breast Exam (CBE): CBE is the inspection and palpation of the breast by a health care professional.
Core Needle Biopsy: The removal of a cylinder of tissue with a large-diameter needle, from a growth or mass, for microscopic examination.
Cyst: A fluid filled sac or cavity, usually benign. The fluid can usually be removed with a hypodermic needle. (See aspiration.)
Duct: A pathway in the breast through which milk passes from the lobes in the breast to the nipple.
Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS): DCIS is considered pre-cancer or non-invasive cancer because cancer cells are contained in the ducts and do not have the ability to spread.
Ductal Papilloma: A non-cancerous breast tumor, arising in the breast duct, that usually cannot be felt. It generally appears as either a bloody or clear nipple discharge.
Estrogen: A female hormone produced by ovaries and adrenal glands, important to reproduction, and which may stimulate some cancers to grow.
Estrogen Receptor Assay: A laboratory test performed on a malignant breast tumor to determine if the tumor is stimulated by estrogen to grow.
Excisional Biopsy: The surgical removal of the entire growth or mass for diagnosis.
Fibroadenoma: A common benign lump that is generally firm, round and movable. It is made of fibrous and glandular tissue in the breast. This noncancerous lump may occur at any age but is more common in young adulthood.
Fibrosystic Condition: A non-cancerous breast condition, sometimes resulting in painful cysts or lumpy breasts, also referred to as benign breast disease.
Fine Needle Aspiration Biopsy: The removal of cells with a small-diameter needle, from a growth or mass, for microscopic diagnosis.
Frozen Section: A method of rapid tissue diagnosis. During a biopsy, a portion of the biopsy tissue is frozen and a thin slice of the tissue is mounted on a slide. The slide is sent to the laboratory to be looked at under a microscope and viewed by the pathologist. A preliminary interpretation is then give to the surgeon.
Hormone Receptor Assay: A diagnostic test to determine whether a breast cancer’s growth is influenced by hormones.
Hormones: Substances made by the body which regulate the activity of certain cells or organs, i.e. sex hormones are largely responsible for sexual function and the physical characteristics that distinguish the sexes.
Immunotherapy: The treatment of cancer by stimulation of the body’s own immune defense system.
In Situ: Literally means “in the site of.” In regard to cancer, it refers to tumors that have not grown beyond the site of origin, into neighboring tissue.
Incisional Biopsy: The surgical removal of a portion of the growth or mass for microscope diagnosis.
Intraductal: Means within the milk duct.
Invasive Breast Cancer: The cancer has broken out of the ducts of the breast into the surrounding tissue. (This does not mean it has metastasized or spread to other parts of the body.)
Lactation: The process of producing milk and breastfeeding a child.
Lobes: Groups of glands in the breast which produce milk.
Lobular Carcinoma In Situ (LCIS): LCIS is a marker for an increased risk in cancer but is not in itself precancerous.
Lump: Any kind of mass in the breast or elsewhere in the body.
Lumpectomy: The surgical removal of a cancerous lump and a small margin of surrounding normal tissue.
Lymphatic System: It moves protein and fluid from the body back into the blood stream; and the lymph nodes act as filters removing malignant and bacterial cells, as well as, foreign substances from the lymph fluid before entering the bloodstream. Lymph tissue is also found in the tonsils, spleen, intestinal wall, and bone marrow.
Lymphadema: The swelling of the arm caused by excess fluid. This condition may occur after lymph nodes and vessels have been surgically removed.
Lymph Nodes: Bean-shaped structures scattered along the vessels of the lymphatic system that act as a filter to remove malignant cells, bacterial cells, and foreign substances. The lymph nodes found in the underarm (axilla) are those most likely to be invaded by breast cancer cells. Some are usually removed during breast surgery for pathologic examination.
Mammograms/Mammography: An x-ray image of the breast used for screening or diagnosis of breast cancer. Mammography has the ability to detect breast cancer two years before reaching the size that can be felt in the breast.
Modified Radical Mastectomy: Most common type of mastectomy performed today. The breast and some of the underarm lymph nodes are removed, while the chest muscles are saved.
Partial Mastectomy: Surgical removal of a portion of the breast including the cancer and a surrounding margin of normal tissue. (See lumpectomy.)
Prophylactic Mastectomy: A preventative procedure sometimes recommended for a patient at high risk of developing breast cancer in one or both breasts. Breast tissue is removed without removing skin or muscle.
Radical Mastectomy: The surgical removal of the breast, chest muscles, and underarm lymph nodes.
Mastitis: An inflammation of the breast usually occurring during lactation. Symptoms include pain, nipple discharge, fever, and redness and/or hardness over an area of the breast.
Microcalcification: Tiny specks of calcium in the breast, which may be seen on a mammogram. They can be related to a benign breast condition or breast cancer.
Oncologist: A physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.
Medical Oncologist: A physician who specializes in the treatment of cancer using chemotherapy or hormone therapy.
Radiation Oncologist: A physician specializing in the treatment of cancer using high-energy x-rays.
Surgical Oncologist: A physician specializing in the treatment of cancer using surgical procedures.
Pathologist: A physician who specializes in the diagnosis of disease from blood and tissue samples.
Progesterone Receptor/Assay (PRA): An additional test (to the estrogen receptor assay, or ERA) that indicates whether a breast cancer is stimulated by female hormones to grow.
Radiation Therapy: The use of high-energy x-rays to treat cancer.
Reconstruction: A method used to recreate the breast’s shape after a natural breast has been removed. This may be achieved by the use of implants or by using tissue from another part of a woman’s body.
Recurrence: The reappearance of cancer at the same site (local), near the site (regional), or in other areas of the body (distant).
Remission: The measurable decrease or disappearance of cancer following treatment; also used to refer to the duration of time over which this change occurs.
Screening Mammogram: A mammogram which is used to identify early signs of breast cancer in a woman who does not have symptoms. It provides a baseline x-ray to compare all future mammograms. It involves two x-ray views of each breast.
Staging: Certain test and examinations done before any type of treatment is initiated to determine if the cancer has spread.
Tamoxifen: (Nolvadex) The hormone treatment drug used to prevent recurrence of certain breast cancers by blocking estrogen receptor sites.
Tumor: An abnormal growth or mass of tissue which may be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous).
Ultrasound: A non-invasive procedure using high frequency sound waves. The probe is held against the breast tissue and a visual image projects on to a monitor. It is used to determine if lumps are solid or filled with fluid (cysts).
This information was taken in part from the YWCA Breast Health Guide
AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY (ACS)
A national community-based organization that provides information and referrals to local ACS and support services. Provides evidence-based information on complementary and alternative medicine.
AMERICAN SOCIETY OF PLASTIC & RECONSTRUCTIVE SURGEONS
An information and referral service for individuals seeking the services of a board-certified plastic surgeon.
BREAST CANCER RESEARCH FOUNDATION
The BCRF was founded in 1993 by Evelyn H. Lauder, and is the largest national organization dedicated solely to funding clinical and genetic research on breast cancer. Their mission is to achieve prevention and a cure for breast cancer in our lifetime.
CANCER AND CAREERS
Cancer and Careers is dedicated to empowering and educating people with cancer to thrive in their workplace by providing expert advice, interactive tools and educational events.
An organization, which provides a variety of counseling, financial and emotional support services for cancer patients in person, over the phone, and via e-mail.
CANCER TREATMENT CENTERS OF AMERICA
Since 1988, CTCA's national network of fully accredited cancer hospitals have been helping patients win the fight against cancer using advanced technology and a personalized approach.
Free, personal, private web pages that help family and friends communicate when someone is facing illness.
CHECK YOUR GENES
Their mission is to educate the public and health care professionals on the need for a formal genetic risk assessment and testing, if an individual has a family history of breast or ovarian cancer.
Fertile Hope is a national LIVESTRONG initiative dedicated to providing reproductive information, support and hope to caner patients and survivors whose medical treatments present the risk of infertility.
Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered (FORCE) is the only national nonprofit organization devoted to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Their mission includes support, education, advocacy, awareness, and research specific to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer.
The HealthWell Foundation provides financial assistance to eligible individuals to cover coinsurance, copayments, health care premiums and deductibles for certain medications and therapies.
LIVING BEYOND BREAST CANCER
LBBC’s mission is to empower all women affected by breast cancer to live as long as possible with the best quality of life.
MYSELF: TOGETHER AGAIN
The Myself: Together Again story of delayed breast reconstruction following double mastectomy surgery was inspired by Debbie, who agreed to have the process photographed so that other young women like her could get an idea of what to expect.
NATIONAL BREAST CANCER COALITION
An advocacy group that educates the public and provides ways for individuals to become involved in the fight to stop breast cancer.
NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE (NCI)
Conducts and supports research, training, health information dissemination, and other programs with respect to the cause, diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of cancer, rehabilitation from cancer, and the continuing care of cancer patients and the families of cancer patients.
NATIONAL LYMPHEDEMA NETWORK
Nonprofit organization provides information about the prevention and treatment of lymphedema to patients and health-care professionals, as well as to support groups.
PATIENT ADVOCATE FOUNDATION
The Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF) Co-Pay Relief Program (CPR) provides direct financial support for pharmaceutical co-payments to insured patients, including Medicare Part D beneficiaries, who financially and medically qualify.
THE SCAR PROJECT
The SCAR Project is a series of large-scale portraits of young breast cancer survivors shot by fashion photographer David Jay. The SCAR Project puts a raw, unflinching face on early onset breast cancer while paying tribute to the courage and spirit of so many brave young women.
Sisters Network Inc. is committed to increasing local and national attention to the devastating impact that breast cancer has in the African American community.
SUSAN G. KOMEN BREAST CANCER FOUNDATION
Dedicated to advancing research, education, screening, and treatment of breast cancer. The nation’s largest private funder of breast cancer research dollars.
YSC offers resources, connections and outreach to young breast cancer survivors.
BREAST CANCER ALLIANCE OF CINCINNATI (BCA)
Through political advocacy, educational seminars and communications, the BCA focus is on prevention, detection and treatment of breast cancer. The BCA is an independent non-profit volunteer organization that works in collaboration with other organizations to support these efforts.
CANCER FAMILY CARE
Cancer Family Care provides counseling, education and emotional support to families and individuals affected by the stresses brought by cancer and loss..
CANCER SUPPORT COMMUNITY
The Wellness Community in our area offers people with cancer and their loved ones, free of charge, the support and resources they need to maintain a high quality of life. Programs include a variety of weekly support groups, stress management advice, children's programs, classes in tai chi, yoga and nutrition.
THE NOBLE CIRCLE PROJECT
Noble Circle helps women diagnosed with cancer to reclaim their health using simple, natural, and low-cost methods of self-healing including a whole foods diet, qigong, and group support.
THE PATIENT/PARTNER PROJECT
Provides cancer caregivers information, resources and free services.
THE PINK RIBBON BAG
The Pink Ribbon Bag, a gift bag full of items that educate, support, and provide comfort and hope to women as they begin their healing journey, is given to women newly diagnosed with breast cancer.
PREMIER HEALTH PARTNERS
The PHP Mission and Legacy has always been to provide the most comprehensive, affordable and accessible health services and products for the betterment of health care in southwest Ohio.
Bethesda and Good Samaritan Hospital joined together to form TriHealth in 1995, bringing together two of Cincinnati's finest health care organizations. Through these two acute care hospitals and more than 80 locations, TriHealth provides a wide range of clinical, educational, preventative and social programs.
TRI-STATE LYMPHEDEMA CLINIC
Tri-State Lymphedema Clinic provides services to assist in the prevention and treatment of lymphedema.