Tags
Blog

'cancer' posts

What you should know about breast cancer and tips for reading online information

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I’ve been paying more attention to online blogs about breast cancer and realize there is a lot of information and misinformation out there. How can you know what’s correct, what’s marketing, and what is just plain wrong? Here are some tips:

  1. Be an aware and questioning reader: Ask yourself some of the following questions. What is the source of the information? Does the author have anything to gain financially from the information? Are there studies that provide data supporting the recommendations? Who funded the studies and were there any potential conflicts of interest?
  2. Investigate more than one source: Healthcare has become very politicized and complicated but you can find reliable sources. But realize even with trusted sources the information provided may be conflicting. Some reliable sources include: Swedish Cancer Institute, Breast Cancer Action, National Cancer Institute, and American Cancer Society.

  3. Don’t be taken in by conspiracy theorists: I have practiced surgery for 30 years in a variety of situations and healthcare institutions and NEVER have I experienced a desire to withhold effective tests and treatments from patients. Physicians and hospital systems are not suppressing tests, treatments, and /or cures in order to stay in business. I don’t know a breast surgeon who wouldn’t be thrilled to have to practice another specialty if there was a way to prevent breast cancer.

Here are some things that I think it is important to know about breast cancer:

Providing personalized care and individualized treatment plans for patients

Recently, I met with a patient who was diagnosed with localized prostate cancer at a local urology office. He came to Swedish seeking a second opinion for the treatment of his prostate cancer. In doing this, he explained to me that after the diagnosis of his prostate cancer, he was referred to a website to review the available options for the management of prostate cancer and was given very little guidance by the urologist who made the diagnosis. Unfortunately, this is a common scenario in situations where the diagnosing urologist may not have all of the available treatment options at his or her disposal. In discussing this with him afterwards, he felt that the urologist was only interested in making a diagnosis but had no concern over his treatment choice and he felt very confused.

The patient and I sat down together in a 45 minute consultation visit to discuss his diagnosis. As I do with all of my patients recently diagnosed with prostate cancer, we covered the diagnosis, the available treatment options, and the relative risks of each so that he could make an informed decision. I feel fortunate to practice in a place that offers state-of-the-art therapy for prostate cancer by multiple modalities. At Swedish, we have ....

Results 99-100 of 100