Ask the Expert
Our ask-the-expert series will help answer your questions about breast cancer, whether you are newly diagnosed, in treatment or years beyond treatment.
Each month, we ask a breast cancer expert to respond to your questions on a specific topic during an ask-the-expert residency. Answers to select questions will be posted on our website on an ongoing basis throughout the month.
After mastectomy, some women choose to rebuild their breast or breasts using breast reconstruction surgery. Breast reconstruction can be done using your own tissue, or using implants. The decision about whether to have reconstructive surgery – and then which surgery to have – is very personal and can be complex.
This June, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Karen Horton, MD, MSc, FRCSC, answers your questions about different types of breast reconstruction, who may be able to have certain breast reconstruction surgeries, when to have reconstructive surgery, what to consider when making decisions and ways to find qualified surgeons.
Medical tests can help you and your doctor decide what treatments are best for you, give information on your risk of recurrence or getting a second breast cancer, and help people with metastatic breast cancer manage their health over time.
This May, Living Beyond Breast Cancer experts Timothy J. Pluard, MD, and Baljit Singh, MD, answer your questions about tests that are available to you as a person with early-stage or metastatic breast cancer, what their results may mean for your treatment, and how they can help your healthcare team predict your chances of cancer coming back.
If you’re a young woman who has been diagnosed with breast cancer, you may be worried about how your treatment will affect fertility, your ability to become pregnant. Having breast cancer does not necessarily mean that you can’t have children in the future. But if you want to expand your family, it’s important that you learn as much as you can as early as possible.
This May, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Elizabeth S. Ginsburg, MD, answered your questions about how breast cancer treatments can affect your ability to have children and what you can do to preserve your fertility.
April 2015 Ask the Expert: Getting Good Breast Cancer Care as a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Trans Person
Everyone deserves quality health care. But as an LGBT person with breast cancer, you may feel that there aren’t enough resources out there just for you. You may feel unsure about coming out to your providers or talking about the disease with a partner.
This April, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Katherine Campbell, PhD, LCSW, answered your questions about whether and how to come out to your care team; your breast cancer risk as an LGBT person; and fertility, dating with a history of breast cancer, and talking to a partner about breast cancer.
Ann Partridge, MD, MPH answers your questions from LBBC's webinar,"Digging Into the Data: Understanding the Benefits of Ovarian Suppression for Young Women," held on January 13, 2015. The webinar focused on the then recently-released results of the SOFT trial, which found that blocking ovarian function may lower the risk of cancer returning for some young women.
Most, if not all, cancer treatments have some kind of side effect. And, living with metastatic breast cancer means being in treatment long-term. Managing the side effects of the treatments you need is an important part of living well with metastatic disease.
This March, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Evelyn Robles-Rodriguez, RN, MSN, NPC, AOCN answered your questions about what side effects you may experience, how to handle them, what to do if a side effect becomes too much and what your healthcare team can do to help.
Not everyone has a big support system to lean on after a breast cancer diagnosis. Whether you are living alone, living far from friends and family, or simply keep only a small circle of close friends, you may find that you have to care for yourself more often than others. Still, there may be moments when having a stronger support system could be useful.
This February, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Christina Bach, MBE, MSW, LCSW, OSW-C answered your questions about how to juggle everyday life with cancer treatment when you are your own caregiver; what kinds of professionals your treatment center may have to help you; and where to find the support you want.
It’s important that you feel comfortable with your doctors and their recommendations. Whether you want to know about other treatment options, feel more comfortable discussing side effects or simply feel your team isn’t the right fit for you, getting a second opinion may help. This January, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Paul B. Gilman, MD, answered your questions about when it’s best to ask for a second opinion, how to go about getting one, what to do if your health insurance restricts who you can see for treatment and how to talk to your current team about your desire to seek more information from others.
Discussing treatment options, side effects and other lifestyle concerns can seem daunting. This December, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Jennifer J. Griggs, MD, MPH, FACP, answered your questions about how to bring up difficult topics with your care team, what you should ask at appointments and how to get the most out of your time with your doctor.
Healthcare reform, health insurance options and consumer protections can be hard to navigate and understand. This November, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Joanna L. Fawzy Morales, Esq, answered your questions about the Affordable Care Act and how it impacts your care.