Surviving Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Hope, Treatment, and Recovery

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2012-11-01
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
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After her diagnosis of triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), health journalist Patricia Prijatel did what any reporter would do: start investigating the disease, how it occurs, and how it's treated. While she learned that important research was emerging, she found a noticeable lack of resources on the disease, which affects 70,000 women a year and differs from hormone-positive breast cancer in important ways, including prognosis and treatment options. Hormone negative breast cancer disproportionately affects younger women and African-American women - and it can be more dangerous than other types of breast cancer. But there are many reasons to be hopeful, as Prijatel learned. Through her blog, Positives About Negative, she has met hundreds of women who have told her their stories and shared their fears, confusion, and frustration. After her recovery, she began writing this book to provide the first dedicated resource for women diagnosed with TNBC. Surviving Triple Negative Breast Cancerdelivers research-based information on the biology of TNBC; the role of genetics, family history, and race; how to navigate treatment options; and a plethora of strategies to reduce the risk of recurrence, including diet and lifestyle changes. In clear, approachable language, Prijatel provides an accessible guide to understanding a pathology report and a vast array of scientific studies. Woven throughout the book are stories of women who have faced TNBC. These are mothers, wives, daughters, and sisters who went through a variety of medical treatments and then got on with life -- one competes in triathlons, two had babies after being treated with chemo, one got remarried in her 50s, and one just celebrated the 30th birthday of the son she was nursing when she was diagnosed. With honesty and humor, Prijatel's inspiring story shows the heart of a survivor. Her message is that TNBC is a disease to take seriously, with proper and occasionally aggressive treatment, but it is not automatically a killer. Most women diagnosed with the disease do survive.Surviving TripleNegative Breast Canceris a roadmap for women who want to be empowered through their treatment and recovery.

Author Biography

Patricia Prijatel, E.T. Meredith Distinguished Professor Emerita at Drake University, has helped educate, motivate, support, and challenge people for the better part of three decades. She is a nationally published magazine writer, an award-winning teacher, and a well-respected writing coach. Her "Positives About Negative" blog has reached more than 100,000 readers and is one of the few sites that deals specifically with triple negative breast cancer.

Table of Contents

List of Tablesp. xi
List of Boxesp. xiii
Forewordp. xv
Acknowledgmentsp. xix
The Sun Shines on My Bald Headp. 1
Educating Myselfp. 17
How to Use This Bookp. 19
The Language of TNBCp. 21
I Am, Literally, a Friendp. 21
What Is This Disease?p. 23
Sorting Out the Negatives and Positivesp. 26
Recurrence and Metastasesp. 29
Race and Triple-Negativep. 31
The Age Factorp. 34
BRCA Mutationsp. 35
Yeah, But…p. 37
Additional Resourcesp. 39
Understanding Your Diagnosisp. 45
Testing, Testingp. 48
Breast Cancer Types: Where TNBC Fits Inp. 53
Translating Your Pathology Reportp. 56
The Biology of Triple-Negativep. 67
Risks, Correlations, and Exceptionsp. 69
The Implications of a Weakened Immune Systemp. 70
Our Genetic Codep. 72
The Interplay of Hormones and Receptorsp. 76
Inflammation and the Insulin Connectionp. 78
Reproductive Factorsp. 81
How and Why Is Race a Risk Factor?p. 82
Men and Breast Cancerp. 85
Treatment: Your Optionsp. 95
Facing Treatmentp. 96
Surgery: Lumpectomy Versus Mastectomyp. 98
Chemotherapy and TNBCp. 102
Chemotherapy Drugsp. 108
Biologic Therapiesp. 115
Radiationp. 117
Tamoxifen and Arimidexp. 118
Herceptinp. 119
Combined Therapy for Hormone-Negativep. 120
Which Regimen Works Best?p. 121
On the Horizonp. 124
The Rest of Youp. 127
Alternative Treatmentsp. 131
Follow-Up Care After Hormone-Negative Breast Cancerp. 133
The Positives of Healthy Livingp. 145
Exercise and Physical Activityp. 147
Weight Controlp. 152
Diet: Healthy In, Healthy Outp. 153
Putting It All Togetherp. 172
My Life Right Nowp. 185
What Cancer Means to Me Nowp. 195
TNBC Womenp. 196
Appendix Annotated Pathology Report: Pat's Casep. 199
Glossaryp. 207
Indexp. 215
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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