Breast Cancer Surgeons Unprotected and Vulnerable

We Breast Cancer Surgeons are unprotected and vulnerable. We treat breast cancer and protect vulnerable women from the ravages of the disease. Yet we ourselves cannot avoid the awful calamities of life. No better example of this was the recent death of Dr. Jan Huston-Pryor, a Breast Cancer Surgeon from New Jersey. I didn’t know her personally, but knew of her. She was walking her dog one morning recently and was struck by a car and killed. Coincidentally, Dr. Jeanne…

157 Years for 20 Breast Cancer Survivors

Last week, the last week of summer, I saw 20 patients who had survived breast cancer. 20 breast cancer survivors from Brooklyn and Staten Island in one week. Terrific. Happy Labor Day for these breast cancer survivors. All 20 had different types of breasts cancer and different stages and different treatments. Some had breast cancer more than once. All were survivors and all had in common an opportunity to mark a new quantum of time over which they had triumphed…

Breast Cancer and Janice Dickinson: Silicone Dilemmas III

We have been following Janice Dickinson through her breast cancer diagnosis and treatment. Ms. Dickinson has been more than open about her silicone breast implants. Thus, we have discussed difficulties in patients with implants regarding diagnosis and surgical treatment. We last checked in with Janice after she was diagnosed and had a lumpectomy and as she was starting radiation therapy. She has likely finished this, although there has been nothing in news reports. She is probably experiencing skin changes from…

Lumpectomies into Lilacs

Early in my career, years ago, I had done a lumpectomy on a patient. It didn’t look great afterwards. That happens. She finished her radiation therapy, waited a few months, and then showed in my office with the lumpectomy scar incorporated into a swirling floral tattoo. You couldn’t see the incision. All my work (disappointed as I was with it) was  florally camouflaged. A bad scar into a work of art. I loved it. I wish I had taken a…

Breast Cancer and Janice Dickinson: Silicone Dilemmas Part II

With her implants in place, would I want to be the one performing the lumpectomy on Janice Dickinson for her breast cancer? I don’t know Ms. Dickinson, but there is enough information in the public realm to comment on a few of the surgical issues for the treatment of breast cancer in patients with implants. A few years after replacing her thirty year old implants and enduring a cancer scare at the same time, she developed a real breast cancer…

Breast Cancer and Janice Dickinson: Silicone Dilemmas Part I

Janice Dickinson went public a few months ago about having breast cancer.   It seems that there is a celebrity or public person every week who goes public with their breast cancer story. It shouldn’t be surprising. Celebrities and public figures are not immune from breast cancer. After all, it is the most common form of cancer that women develop What was striking about Janice Dickinson’s public story is that she zeroed in, perhaps unwittingly, on the problems of implants…

Breast Cancer Treatment Strategy II: No Midnight Snacks

Breast cancer patients have enough to consider without being confused by claims of improved outcomes of their breast cancer if only they….now fast at night at least thirteen hours. In a recent study early stage breast cancer recurrences were significantly reduced if you fasted at night for at least thirteen hours, which seems to be the magical time span. I’ll bet you didn’t know that. Neither did I. No doubt, a portion of early stage breast cancer patients who have…

Breast Cancer Treatment Strategy: Get A Good Night’s Sleep, No Partying

Wednesday is the day I go to the operating room to treat breast cancer. Breast Cancer Removal and Treatment Day. Inevitably, each breast cancer patient will ask, “Doc, did you get a good night’s sleep?” Of course, I appreciate and understand their concern and try to laugh it off saying I was up all night partying and that my hands aren’t very steady…but things will be fine…don’t worry.. I walked away from one of these encounters and had a flash…

Breast Cancer and the Lives of Husbands, Boyfriends, Fathers and Sons….

Breast Cancer and the lives of Husbands, Boyfriends, Fathers and Sons…. A breast cancer diagnosis creates fear, anxiety, and turmoil in a woman’s life. Understandably so. Less understood is how a breast cancer diagnosis impacts the lives of the men that surround her. I am sharing (with permission) a handwritten note I received from the husband of a patient I treated. It is not often in the internet/email age that one is sent a handwritten note, especially from a man:…

The Youth Movement: Women In Danger

I guess nobody could have scripted this…..two young patients with big problems coming into my office within minutes of each other. Just one of those days. The first had a bad cancer. Everyone who saw her in different disciplines (medical oncology, radiation oncology, other surgeons) had the same uneasy feeling in treating her. A pregnancy had complicated her treatment. Out of this very depressing episode came a beautiful child that the patient brought in a few visits back. She had…