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Community Events
Sentara Cancer Network - FREE Cancer Screenings
Free screenings for Oral, Head & Neck/Thyroid Cancer 

Saturday, April 26, 2014
10 am - 1 pm
Sentara Norfolk General Hospital
1st Floor, River Pavilion
600 Gresham Drive, Norfolk, VA 23507

Free Skin Cancer Screening

Tuesday, May 6
6:00 - 8:00 pm
Sentara Leigh Atrium
844 Kempsville Road, Suite 103
Norfolk, VA 23502

Tuesday, May 20
6:00 - 8:00 pm
Sentara Norfolk General Hospital
Sentara Transplant Center, River Pavilion, 1st Floor
600 Gresham Drive
Norfolk, VA 23507

Registration is Required!
Call 1-800-SENTARA (736-8272)
Bon Secours Offers 6-Week Course for Cancer Patients Who Have Finished Treatment
Have you completed active treatment for breast cancer?

Bon Secours is offering a free 6-week course for patients to learn about caring for themselves after cancer, managing symptoms, and living life to the fullest.

Course begins Wednesday, May 7
Wednesdays from 6 - 8:30 pm

Mechanicsville Library
7461 Sherwood Crossing Place
Mechanicsville, VA 23111

Contact Mary Baker at 804-893-8711 to learn more or register.
Women's Health Virginia Annual Conference
Can the Chains be Broken?
Facing the Challenges of
Genetic & Other Familial
Health Risks

Friday, June 6
Charlottesville, VA

Learn about recent advancements in understanding about genetics and the
interplay between genetics and environment. Find out how this knowledge can affect prevention and treatment of diseases, conditions and risky behaviors that are significant for women and girls.

Learn More!

Spring has sprung and VBCF is hopping - Get involved with some current happenings!




  • Visit new VBCF webpages to learn more:

Breast Cancer Glossary - common definitions of basic breast cancer terms


Learn About Clinical Trials - information about clinical trials including a glossary, myth vs. fact, and where to find trials.

  • Applications for VBCF Mini-Grants to support breast health education in nonprofits serving Virginians are being accepted through April 14 - please help spread the word.
  • Lunch & Learn with VBCF on Thursday, April 17 from Noon to 1:15 pm - Living Beyond Breast Cancer webinar live broadcast in VBCF Richmond Office on Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. Sign up here and share the link with others.




  • VBCF continues to support Medicaid expansion in Virginia based on our belief that all Virginians should have access to cancer prevention screenings.
  • Recently, health care advocates launched -  iamthecoveragegap.com - a compendium of stories from folks who live in the coverage gap.
  • National Lobby Day is coming up on May 6 - Register to attend and/or ride the bus

Guarded Optimism After Breast Cancer Drug Shows Promising Results

Researchers say that a new type of drug can help prevent advanced breast cancer from worsening, potentially providing an important new treatment option for women and a blockbuster product for Pfizer.


In a clinical trial, the drug cut in half the risk that cancer would worsen, or progress, researchers said here on Sunday. The median time before the disease progressed or the women died was 20.2 months for those who received the drug, compared with 10.2 months for the control group.


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High vitamin D levels may increase breast cancer survival

Past studies have claimed that vitamin D may reduce the risk of heart disease, bone fractures and even depression. Now, new research suggests that breast cancer patients with high levels of the vitamin in their blood are more likely to survive the disease than patients with low levels. 


Can vitamin A turn back the clock on breast cancer?


A derivative of vitamin A, known as retinoic acid, found abundantly in sweet potato and carrots, helps turn pre-cancer cells back to normal healthy breast cells, which may help explain why some clinical studies have been unable to see a benefit of vitamin A on cancer: the vitamin doesn't appear to change the course of full-blown cancer, only pre-cancerous cells, and only works at a very narrow dose.  


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How Being Ignored Helped A Woman Discover The Breast Cancer Gene


Back in the 1970s, a geneticist named Mary-Claire King decided she needed to figure out why women in some families were much more likely to get breast cancer.


It took 17 years for King and her colleague to identify the single gene that could cause both breast and ovarian cancer. During that time, many people discounted her work, saying that genes couldn't cause complex diseases like cancer. She proved them wrong by mapping the location of the gene she named BRCA1. In 1994, after an international "race" of four years among competing laboratories, the BRCA1 gene was successfully cloned. 





Many Breast Cancer Survivors Suffer Financially, Study Finds

One-quarter of breast cancer survivors are worse off financially four years after their diagnosis, and 12 percent still have medical debt from their cancer therapy, a new study finds.

"As oncologists, we are proud of the advances in our ability to cure an increasing proportion of patients diagnosed with breast cancer," study author Dr. Reshma Jagsi, an associate professor of radiation oncology at the University of Michigan Medical School, said in a university news release.

"But as treatments improve, we must ensure that we do not leave these patients in financial ruin because of our efforts," Jagsi said.