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Guides to Understanding Breast Cancer

In this section, learn more about our guides to understanding breast cancer that address the unique needs of those newly diagnosed with breast cancer. Read descriptions of the books and brochures, download free PDFs and order single copies or in bulk at our  online marketplace.

Please use the links below to access the guides of interest to you.

Frequently Asked Questions About Treatment for Early-Stage Breast Cancer

This FAQ, Frequently Asked Questions About Treatment for Early-Stage Breast Cancer, will help you discuss your choices for neoadjuvant and adjuvant therapy with your healthcare team. Learn about goals, benefits and risks, and hear answers to common questions about therapy given before surgery.

Guide to Understanding Financial Concerns

The Guide to Understanding Financial Concerns will help you navigate private and public health insurance plans and explains how to get insurance if you don't have it. Discover what to do if your claim is denied, how to access federal and private programs, when to use COBRA and disability and how to handle the "hidden" costs of breast cancer. Available online only.

Guide for the Newly Diagnosed

Learn the basics of breast cancer for the recently diagnosed. Find out about breast cancer types, pathology reports, the medical team, cancer stages, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, hormonal therapies, targeted therapies, clinical trials and second opinions. Explore questions to help you make informed decisions and find emotional support.

Guide to Understanding Treatment Decisions

Learn how diagnostic tests and pathology tests help your doctor build a tailored plan for your breast cancer treatment. Find out what questions to explore so you can make empowered decisions about surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormonal therapy and targeted therapy.

Guide to Understanding Hormonal Therapy

This guide explores medical and surgical options for early-stage breast cancer. Learn about the role of hormones in the body and in the development of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer. Find out how tamoxifen, aromatase inhibitors and ovarian suppression and ablation work to decrease your risk for recurrence. Equally important, find out about side effects, and get practical tips and advice on how to manage them. 

Guide to Understanding Intimacy and Sexuality

Learn practical ways to manage the sexual side effects of breast cancer diagnosis and treatment, how to talk to your partner or healthcare providers about sexual concerns, and where to go to find the resources you need.  

Guide to Understanding Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

Our Guide to Understanding Triple-Negative Breast Cancer, created in partnership with the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation, offers information on common terms to know, risk factors, treatment basics, myths about this diagnosis and post-treatment concerns. Read the experiences of real women affected by triple-negative breast cancer and tips from healthcare professionals.

Guide to Understanding Lymphedema

Learn the signs and symptoms of breast cancer-related lymphedema, ways to manage your lymphedema risk, treatments for lymphedema, how lymphedema can impact your emotions and how to pay for lymphedema care.

Getting Connected: African-Americans Living Beyond Breast Cancer

Our culturally sensitive booklet Getting Connected: African-Americans Living Beyond Breast Cancer will help you from the moment of diagnosis, through breast cancer treatment and beyond. African-American women affected by breast cancer discuss their reactions to diagnosis, how they made treatment decisions and where they found support.

We Celebrate Tomorrow: Latinas Living Beyond Breast Cancer

This culturally sensitive booklet shares the stories of Latinas with breast cancer. Explore your first reactions to a breast cancer diagnosis, beliefs and truths about breast cancer, ways to get good health care, breast cancer treatment options, getting support from family and friends and what to do after you finish active treatment.

Guide to Understanding Your Emotions

If you are newly diagnosed, the Guide to Understanding Your Emotions will help you make sense of your feelings. This brochure covers common emotions, signs of anxiety and depression, consulting a healthcare professional, responding to emotions, understanding your feelings after initial treatment ends and practical strategies for moving forward.

Guide to Understanding Breast Cancer Treatment Research Studies

Learn the basics of cancer clinical trials, weigh the pros and cons of taking part in breast cancer research and explore questions to ask your doctors. Get understandable information about clinical trial phases, research protocols, randomization, blinding, informed consent and safety laws. Available online only.