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.


April 1, 2017

Being diagnosed with breast cancer can turn your world upside down. Many aspects of having cancer, including treatments and their side effects, telling people about your diagnosis, and financial worries can be emotionally overwhelming. In April, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Hester Hill Schnipper, LICSW, BCD, OSW-C, answered your questions about breast cancer and your emotions.

March 1, 2017

Breast cancer and its treatments can make pregnancy difficult or impossible. But there are many kinds of families, and many ways to build a family. Adoption is one of those ways.

In March, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Gwendolyn P. Quinn, PhD, answered your questions about adoption, including how to decide if adoption is right for you, how the process works, and how a history of breast cancer could affect your adoption experience.

February 1, 2017

Breast cancer treatments can save lives. But they can also have side effects. One serious potential side effect of some breast cancer treatments is heart damage. But you and your healthcare providers can take action to protect your heart.

In February, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Gretchen G. Kimmick, MD, MS answered your questions about heart health, including how different breast cancer treatments can affect your heart, how to keep your heart strong after a breast cancer diagnosis, and more. 

January 3, 2017

For hundreds or even thousands of years, people with cancer have relied on complementary therapies to manage side effects of cancer and its treatments. These therapies can involve nutrition, mind-body practices, artistic expression and certain forms of exercise. Only in the last few decades have these methods, now collectively called integrative therapies, become an accepted part of mainstream Western medical care.

Dwight L. McKee, MD presented at a November 2016 Living Beyond Breast Cancer program called Treating the Whole You: Integrative Care and Breast Cancer. More audience questions were submitted than could be answered during the program, so Dr. McKee agreed to answer some of those questions here. He also took new questions from you about integrative therapies, from supplements to take and foods to avoid, to how mindfulness and self-expression can help you feel better during cancer treatment, and more.

December 1, 2016

Breast cancer and its treatments can make working difficult or impossible. This can have serious effects on your career and your financial health. But having information about your rights and about what resources available to you can help you get through this tough time.

In December, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Joanna L. Fawzy Morales, Esq answered your questions about your finances and your career, from your legal rights as an employee, to social security disability benefits, to where to turn for financial aid, and more.

November 1, 2016

Breast cancer is often thought about as one disease. But in reality, different breast cancers grow for different reasons and need different treatments. There are three main subtypes of breast cancer: hormone receptor-positive, HER2-positive and triple-negative. Do you know your subtype?

Researchers have created therapies specific to certain subtypes to best treat each type of the disease. They’re always learning more about these subtypes, trying to find new subtypes, and working to create new treatments.

In November, Living Beyond Breast Cancer expert Debu Tripathy, MD answered your questions about breast cancer subtypes.