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.


August 1, 2016

Breast cancer can cause extreme tiredness. Its treatments can as well. Insomnia and fatigue associated with breast cancer can leave you with little energy, making it hard to live your life the way you want. People around you may not understand just how exhausting breast cancer and its treatments can be.

This August, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Ann Berger, APRN, PhD, AOCNS, FAAN, will answer your questions about fatigue related to breast cancer, from why it happens and how to deal with it, to how to talk to friends, family members and co-workers about what you’re going through.

July 1, 2016

Lymphedema is a condition in which extra lymph fluid builds up, causing swelling in tissues under the skin of the hand, arm, breast or torso. It is a common side effect of breast cancer treatment. Whether you are living with this condition or you've heard about it and are hoping to avoid it, you may have questions about lymphedema.

In July, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Lori B. Ranallo, RN, MSN, ARNP-BC, CBCN, answered your questions about lymphedema, including how to lower your risk of developing it, how to treat it and how to maintain your quality of life.

June 1, 2016

Many people have decades of life ahead of them after breast cancer treatment is over. Though cancer is in the past, the experience of breast cancer, and the desire to do everything you can to lower your risk of recurrence, is part of your future.

In June, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Kathryn J. Ruddy, MD, MPH, answered your questions about long-term survivorship after a breast cancer diagnosis, from follow-up care and fear of recurrence to nutrition, exercise and stress relief.

May 1, 2016

Learning you have breast cancer can be overwhelming. You’re hearing new words, meeting new people and making treatment decisions, all while trying to live your life in as normal a way as possible.

Nobody understands this better than people who have experienced it themselves. So in May, Living Beyond Breast Cancer presented a panel of women who have been diagnosed at different ages, with different subtypes and stages of breast cancer, including metastatic breast cancer. They answered your questions about being newly diagnosed with breast cancer, from talking to others about your diagnosis and putting together a healthcare team you trust, to working through worries and fears and continuing to live well.

April 1, 2016

Breast cancer isn't only a medical issue. It can also come with a variety of legal issues. Knowing more about laws related to treatments, insurance, employment and other topics can help you get the best care while protecting your family, your money and your career.

In April, a Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert, lawyer Stephanie Fajuri, JD, answered your questions about legal concerns related to breast cancer.

March 1, 2016

Hormonal therapy is medicine or surgery that lowers the amount of estrogen in the body. Your doctor may also call this type of treatment endocrine or anti-estrogen therapy. It is used for cancers that are hormone receptor-positive, meaning they depend on estrogen or progesterone to grow. Hormonal therapy is used to lower the risk of recurrence in early-stage breast cancer and to slow growth in 
metastatic breast cancer.

In March, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Jennifer L.A. Armstrong, MD, will answer your questions about hormonal therapy, including what treatments may be used, who may get it, why it may be offered and how it could affect the rest of your treatment and your risk of recurrence.