#Women Informed Supported Empowered
Conflicts of interest and well-funded marketing campaigns have created an imbalance of information — promoting a one-sided story of benefits while ignoring or downplaying harms.
Inspired by thousands of women’s personal experiences and shocking discoveries following a diagnosis of DCIS, also known as “Stage Zero” Breast Cancer, #BeWISE seeks to spare thousands of women world-wide annually from harm due to being uninformed or misinformed.
Most women have never heard of breast cancer over-diagnosis and over-treatment.
#BeWISE utilizes videos and info-graphics to break down real science into simple, no-nonsense chunks.
Women are encouraged to become their own best health-care advocates by being well-informed on the following topics:
- Actual vs. Perceived Risk of Breast Cancer
- Potential Harms of Screening Mammography
- Overdiagnosis & Overtreatment
- DCIS (Stage Zero Breast Cancer)
- Options for Breast Imaging
- Nutrition & Lifestyle Risk Reduction/Prevention Strategies
Actual vs Perceived Risk of Breast Cancer
Women may hear…
“Regular mammograms reduce breast cancer deaths by 20%.”
Sounds pretty good…but how many lives do they really save?
Only 1 in 1,000!
Here is an excellent short video explaining this:
Potential Harms of Screening Mammography
Having a mammogram — or not — should be a personal decision based on balanced, unbiased information which weighs both the benefits and harms. No one should ever feel pressured, intimidated, bullied or shamed for choosing NOT to have a mammogram.
Yet health-care providers, charities, celebrities, and the media are constantly reminding, persuading, encouraging, and even brainwashing women into getting mammograms.
How can women make a truly informed decision?
This is the mission of #BeW I S E
Should I Get a Mammogram? is an online brochure explaining overdiagnosis, overtreatment, false positives, and false negatives.
“Turns out, mammograms save fewer lives than you think…”
Why is this such a complicated, often debated topic? Dr. Michael Gregor has made a series of 14 videos explaining the pros and cons of mammography. Women need to take the time to understand this. Here is one of the videos:
Dr. Pam Popper also posted a video about the importance of women being properly informed about mammograms, breast cancer and DCIS:
DCIS — “Stage Zero” Breast Cancer
“DCIS is a prime example of potential overtreatment. DCIS is usually treated similar to invasive breast cancer with surgery, radiation and hormone-blocking medicines.
Despite newer research concluding these interventions provide no difference in survival, aggressive ‘cancer’ treatments remain the ‘standard of care,’ and many women world-wide are faced with the life-long emotional, physical and financial consequences of aggressive treatments.
Estimates suggest that mammographic screening has resulted in overdiagnosis and overtreatment in over 1 million women in the United States in the past 30 years. The majority of this is due to the overtreatment of DCIS.” – PRECISION (PREvent ductal Carcinoma In Situ Invasive Overtreatment Now), an international research project funded by Cancer Research UK
Dr. Michael Gregor explains Overtreatment of DCIS:
Culture of Fear Needs a Paradigm Shift
“There’s a hysteria around breast cancer. The extremism that sometimes comes into play in DCIS treatment decision making is a ‘cultural problem.’ This is not a life-threatening problem.” –– Dr. Anne Partridge, MD, MPH, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
“Because of the noninvasive nature of DCIS, coupled with its favorable prognosis, strong consideration should be given to remove the anxiety-producing term “carcinoma” from the description of DCIS.” – National Institutes of Health, State of the Science, 2009
Dr. Susan Love sheds light on DCIS:
Facts about DCIS:
- DCIS stands for Ductal Carcinoma in Situ
- It is non-invasive “pre-cancerous” cells
- Mainly found on screening mammograms
- Affects 60,000+ women annually world-wide
- Most have no signs or symptoms
- By 2020 more than 1 million living U.S. women estimated to have a DCIS diagnosis
- “Standard of care” treatments are aggressive — similar to invasive breast cancer
If Diagnosed with DCIS:
- Take time to gather information.
- Get a 2nd Pathology Opinion
- Know your risk — DCISionRT is a new bio-marker test to determine risk level and benefit of radiation or not. (*DCISionRT is validated for women who have had breast conserving surgery. Ask your Dr. if the test can be ordered from your biopsy sample BEFORE making any treatment decisions. Read my blog post and speak with Jennifer Cohrs, Patient Advocate with Prelude Dx, to learn more about the benefits of this test: A New Bio-marker Test for DCIS = Peace of Mind for Thousands of Women
- If “low-risk,” consider a clinical trial comparing active surveillance to surgery: COMET (US) LORIS (UK) LORD (Netherlands)
- Watch video of Dr. Shelley Hwang and Patient Advocate Donna Pinto:
Options for Breast Imaging
- Learn about breast density — one of the strongest predictors of the failure of mammography screening to detect cancer. Visit Are You Dense?
- Review studies on Mammograms, Ultrasound, MRI and Thermography: Imaging and Monitoring
Nutrition & Lifestyle Risk Reduction/Prevention Strategies
- Prevention/Risk Reduction, Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation
- Nutrition & Lifestyle, Dr. Deanna Attai
- Food for Life Cancer Project, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
- Proactive Breast Health Club, DCIS Redefined: Dilemmas, Choices & Integrative Solutions
#Be W I S E and Stay Connected
- DCIS 411 — “Follow” for email alerts with new posts
- DCIS Integrative Support & Empowerment “Join” Facebook Group
- Use #BeWISE in social media posts
DCIS 411 Founder Donna Pinto shares her story:
Sponsors, partners, supporters, advocates, mentors, donors, media welcome!
Please Get involved!
Please consider making a donation! Even small contributions will go a long way in supporting this campaign to educate millions of women world-wide. Click here to DONATE — Thank you!!!
Please share #BeW I S E with women you care about! Thank You!!