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The HER2 protein, which encourages the growth of cancer cells, is present in about 20 percent of all breast cancers. While HER2-positive breast cancers tend to be very aggressive, today the prognosis is generally very good, thanks to the introduction of HER2 inhibitors such as trastuzumab (brand name Herceptin). However, not all HER2-positive breast cancers respond to e…

Health and Fitness

Chemotherapy transfusion appointments in recent weeks looked much like Halloween for Mai Nguyen, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in April. Nguyen (pronounced Win) used cooling cap cryotherapy during four chemo treatments as the agent doxorubicin – better known as the “Red Devil” because of its harshness – dripped into her veins. It was worth the unusual look – a…

Health and Fitness

More than 15,000 walkers combined to raise $450,000 over the weekend during the Making Strides Walk at Canalside. The results compared to those of last year’s walk, said Kim McMahon, communications director with the regional affiliate of the American Cancer Society. Breast cancer survivors and others touched by the disease participated in either a 5K run or similar-l…

Health and Fitness

Melissa Wanzer weathered five months of chemotherapy after her breast cancer was discovered in June 2016. A double mastectomy followed, along with about 30 radiation treatments. She breathed a sigh of relief afterward – but… "You think you're out of the woods when you're cancer-free but now I'm in the reconstruction phase,” she said. “I wish I had that yellow tape I …

Health and Fitness

A group of 16 men will brush up their wardrobes this month as they lend a hand to help fight breast cancer. They have agreed to participate in the third annual Real Men Wear Pink fundraiser to benefit the American Cancer Society. Each participant accepts a $2,500 minimum fundraising challenge and will look to top their pink-wearing peers throughout October, Breast Ca…

Health and Fitness

Cynthia Gromada-Dominske launched an exercise routine late last year after a battle with breast cancer, but a new opportunity to ramp things up came this spring in the form of the Hope Chest Buffalo Dragon Boat Festival. The 55-year-old Grand Island resident will be among 80 fellow breast cancer survivors from the region to participate Saturday in a series of races on t…

Business

More than 15,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in New York state each year. Early detection, which comes with mammography, has whittled down the number of deaths in recent years to about 2,600 annually. The news isn't quite as good in four Western New York counties where breast cancer screening rates are below average, primarily because women who are poor, unde…

Business

Forgive Jessica Pirro the fact that she hasn’t decorated her office walls since Crisis Services made a big move last November from North Buffalo into more spacious surroundings in Riverside. Like many her agency serves, the chief executive officer had a challenging 2017. Pirro needed to lean on others during the move while she battled triple negative breast cancer, G…

Health and Fitness

The Breast Cancer Network of WNY and Windsong Radiology Group will present a free seminar for breast cancer patients and survivors this week. Windsong Breast Care Coordinator Kay Dekker will lead the seminar, “Surviving Cancer – Creating your Life Plan,” which will focus on treatment, the latest research, survivorship, clinical trials and resources available to Western …

Health and Fitness

A new study from Roswell Park Cancer Institute found that women who took multivitamin supplements before their breast cancer diagnosis and/or during treatment were less likely to develop debilitating and often long-lasting chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy, or CIPN. Such neuropathy is a common side effect of cancer treatment that causes shooting or burning pain…

Health and Fitness

Andrea Whitmarsh pushes her daughters on the swing set in the backyard, brushes their hair and tucks them into bed at night with the same joy other mothers feel in similar moments. She also harbors worries, far less familiar, that her girls will one day grow up to face a life dogged in part by cancer fears. The concern is based on experience. Like her mother befor…

Local News

The Breast Cancer Network of Western New York announced a series of events open to the public and running throughout the month of October to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Girls Night Out will launch the series from 6 to 11 p.m. Friday in the Grapevine Banquet facility, 333 Dick Road, Depew. The night will include local vendors, hors d’oeuvres, a wine wall, …

Columns

Katie O'Brien's apartment in Houston is on the fifth floor. She parks her car in an elevated ramp. When Hurricane Harvey engulfed the city, she looked out her window and saw floodwaters pouring down the street. She was dry. Her car would start. The way she sees it, she was lucky. "Where my heart breaks is for all these people who can't get out," she said of Houston, …

Health and Fitness

The Breast Cancer Network of Western New York will host its first annual Strike Out Breast Cancer Walk & Ballgame Saturday. The event will start with a pre-game party at 3:30 p.m. in the parking lot of WNY Imaging Group, 144 Genesee St.; it will be followed by a 1-mile awareness walk to Coca-Cola Field, where participants can enjoy the evening’s Buffalo Bisons baseb…