Here's a surprise!
Researchers lie exaggerate benefits and play down side effects in describing their results. I am SHOCKED I tell you, shocked! And I'm sure its not just for breast cancer drugs.A recent study in the Annals of Oncology (which you can't read online unless you pay big bucks) found this. I found this describing it: "Reports on Breast-Cancer Drugs Are Often Biased, Research Finds Researchers often exaggerate the benefits and play down the potentially toxic side-effects of breast-cancer drugs in clinical trials, according to a new study published in the Annals of Oncology. One way they do this is by emphasizing some sec...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 11, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: reviews lies cancer research Source Type: blogs

A momentus event
I have no idea how this happened. It was not planned. Its significant (but not the cure for cancer we all want).This my blog's 2000th (two-thousandth) published post. Back on Saturday, June 2, 2007, I had no idea my blog would be around this long.I planned a little blog about my breast cancer adventures. It sort of developed into a life of its own. I had to blog every day. And I did. I very rarely skip days - usually this only happens when I am out of internet range.Even if I hadn't developed new ailments would I have kept blogging? Probably. Its an addiction. It would probably be more a blog about my cat/husband/garden/ad...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 10, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: blogging Source Type: blogs

Dash - blah, blah, blah
Blah, blah, blah. Dash. Again. do you know what Dash is? Its that boring diet that won again as the best overall diet. Its called Dash or - Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension. It was developed by the NIH. It also helps reduce cholesterol and the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and kidney stones. Blah, blah, blah.It focuses on limiting your sodium intake as well as the usual balanced plate of grains and fruit and vegetables. So hide the salt shaker and you will do fine. (I like the picture on CNN.com which shows a salad full of olives.)The thought of it makes my skin crawl. It was introduced to me by a doctor who told m...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 9, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: diet healthy eating food Source Type: blogs

The cliff moved
Yesterday I had an appointment with my medical oncologist to finalize me going off Femara (after 5 1/2 years of hot flashes - jealous?). I have been debating/stressing/agonizing over this for a few weeks or months. I expected to have the big conversation yesterday.I was wrong.My oncologist's two children shared their stomach flu with their mother. Apparently she started vomiting as she drove to the hospital. I saw one of her nurse practitioners who I had never seen before instead.She was very nice and remarked about my lengthy medical background (it is now at a level where doctors and other medical personnel comment on it)...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 8, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: oncologist medical research doctor appointments Source Type: blogs

No pain, no gain.
I end up in pain all the time these days whether I do anything or just sit around. My theory on this is if I am going to end up in pain, I might as well have fun doing so. It is January. It is Boston. It is winter. So yesterday we went to the beach.Why not?It was low tide. It was a beautiful day. The sun was shining once it stopped snowing. This might even be part of a ship wreck from the early 1900's. There was snow on the beach and some ice.And I made a snow angel. Then we went out for (very healthy) fried clams while my next Tramadol kicked in to relieve the pain. I had fun while I was in pain. (Source: C...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 7, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: fun beach snow pain Source Type: blogs

Its a whole new world out there
So you get an ailment and, in the very 21st century way of doing things, you start a blog. You meet all kinds of people (in person and virtually), get and give support, and learn a lot about your ailment and resources available for you. You start following other blogs, sign up for communities and listservs, you get people to communicate with world wide.Its amazing how much information and support is out there - its truly a wonderful thing. It can be a full time job to keep up on a single ailment.But I started behind the curve as I had two ailments - two cancers - thyroid and breast to blog about. I have mostly focused on b...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 6, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: support fibromyalgia learning blogging rheumatoid arthritis Source Type: blogs

I am making this a positive thing
Although I wont take my last Femara tablet until I see my oncologist on Monday, just to be sure there are not any last minute positive studies that will show Femara forever will prevent any future return of cancer cooties, I am making this a positive thing - as much as I can.Breast cancer treatment puts you into menopause. My breast cancer treatment started on August 1, 2007 and my hot flashes began shortly there after. Tamoxifen continued them. Femara continued them. I am not sure I remember life without hot.flashes. This is now January 5, 2013 which means its been 5 years and 5 months of hot flashes. They can be convenie...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 5, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: cancer treatment hot flashes side effects Source Type: blogs

Approaching the cliff
I have my own personal cliff that I am facing. And it has nothing to do with finances. Money isn't everything as the old saw might say. My cliff involves my health, as always. I don't think of my health as a series of cliffs in anyway. It is a series of disasters, appointments, and procedures, where I might feel a pinch.But on Monday I face the breast cancer treatment cliff. I will stop taking Femara. That means my breast cancer treatment will end and I will go on my merry little way.... WAIT, BACK UP.... Cancer treatment can't end. I need to have my hand held for the rest of my life with this cancer shit.Deep breath. Well...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 4, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: doctors cancer treatment follow up Source Type: blogs

On Being Happy
We should all try to be happy and enjoy life. Who wants to hang out with a bunch of curmudgeons anyway? We do not even need the internet to tell us when life gives us lemons we should make lemonade (and add vodka as needed). But I do think we should forget about things like the doomsday clock, cliffs, death, and cancer among other things.So I looked on the internet for sources of information on this (because everything on the internet is true) and found that there are 15 things to give up in order to be happy:Give up your need to be always right.Give up your need to be in control.Give up on blameGive up on self-defeating s...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 3, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: happiness Source Type: blogs

Get out of my way
As part of my routine, I am going to the gym after work today. I go three days a week regularly and I am serious about my workout. I bring my nook or a book so I don't have to talk to poeple I don't want to on the cardio machines. I have a routine, 45-50 cardio, four machines, and the rest in the mat room. I have a schedule to meet - I need to get through my routine and go home before I collapse in exhaustion after a long day at work.I know the gym will be annoyingly crowded by all these resolution types. I hate the gym for the first three weeks of January - that is how long the average New Year's Resolution lasts. Then th...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 2, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: gym exercise Source Type: blogs

Does one out of four count?
I'm slightly better than others because the data says 80% of New Year's resolutions fail. I made four resolutions at the beginning of 2012, and only achieved one. My resolutions were:Not to get cancer again in 2012. I didn't. I mean there are things that are under supervision but no new diagnoses.Not to develop any new medical ailments in 2012. FAIL. I now have fibromyalagia and rheumatoid arthritis so I have all sorts of new stuff to learn about.To lose weight. FAIL. I upped my personal deflabbification project and I didn't lose weight. Well I did and it came back - see #2 above which made it harder to exercise. I think I...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - January 1, 2013 Category: Cancer Tags: resolutions goals Source Type: blogs

Would you want to know?
I have blogged about this before. If you could do a genetic test to find out if you are likely to get an ailment and die of it, would you want to know?I am still up in the air on this one. I was interested to read about a 21 year old woman who has the BRCA 1 gene, watched her mother die of cancer, but has decided she doesn't want to know. Her choice is to live an  unstressed like without the burden of the knowledge that she could die of cancer and what it would be like.I can completely understand that point of view. Just because we can learn about our medical and genetic make up, do we have to learn it? I mean is ther...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - December 31, 2012 Category: Cancer Tags: knowledge medical decisions planning genes Source Type: blogs

Good bye 2012, Hello 2013 health care-wise
So if you read CNN, which I do. I find it much easier than watching CNN - either HLN screaming about new 'factoids' and miracles, or regular CNN going on and on and on about something boring and political that will put me to sleep before I learn anything. I prefer my news in the low brow way - tell it like it is and keep it short. This is why I like CNN online - because I can skip through articles instead of listening to people S L O W L Y reading them. I don't have a lot of time in my life to waste on the news. I have better things to do - like have fun.I have digressed. CNN put out their list of the top health news stori...
Source: Caroline's Breast Cancer Blog - December 30, 2012 Category: Cancer Tags: medical care health care health insurance Source Type: blogs