Women Are Not Tumor Hosts (and Other #SABCS Reflections)

By Karuna Jaggar, Executive Director
Every year, we attend the largest breast cancer conference in the world, the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS), so we can speak up for patient needs and report back to you on what’s new in breast cancer.

Karuna Jaggar at SABCSThis huge conference often feels very disconnected from the reality of living with—and dying from—breast cancer. As in many medical settings, some presenters refer to women as tumor “hosts” and talk about patients “failing” treatments—when in reality, it’s treatments that fail patients. In the gigantic exhibit hall, pharmaceutical and biotech companies market their products at shiny booths and give out free ice cream treats. And you can go days without seeing a photo of a single human on presenters’ slides.

We push back against this dehumanizing language and patient erasure, demanding patients are front and center in the research agenda—because the point of all this research is to save women’s lives.

As always, we’re reporting back to you on practice-changing treatment updates as well as analysis of trends in breast cancer treatment and diagnosis. This was another disappointing year with too little to show for the billions of dollars spent on research. While real people are waiting right now for desperately-needed treatment breakthroughs, researchers are chasing their tails and tweaking treatment sequencing.

Click on the links below to read each article.

If you have questions about breast cancer treatment, diagnosis, screening, or risk reduction, you can always get in touch with our Information and Resource Liaison Zoe Christopher at zchristopher@bcaction.org or toll-free at 877-2-STOPBC.

P.S. For live updates from conferences like these, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

This entry was posted in BCA News, E-Alerts.

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