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About Breast Cancer

In 2008, nearly 200,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. One woman in eight either has or will develop breast cancer in her lifetime.

"While many women live in fear of breast cancer, a woman today has a lower chance of dying from breast cancer than she's had in decades," said Harmon J. Eyre, M.D., chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society.

Although most women have an early diagnosis, and thus a good prognosis, the diagnosis of breast cancer is very difficult for patients and their families. Our physicians carefully review each case, and outline in detail the woman's individualized treatment plan.

Many women will need radiation as part of their overall treatment. With the latest technology at hand, we use 3D conformal, IMRT, and recently Image-Guided Radiation Therapy in selected breast cancer patients. To minimize toxicities to the heart, an Airway Breathing Control is used in some patients. Working with excellent surgeons, radiologists, and medical oncologists, we treat breast cancer in a multi-modality team approach.

At Saint Joseph Radiation Oncology, we have a social worker to help patients and their families. Some common issues are support groups, transportation, housing placement, general services through American Cancer Society, and finding a good wig. Our nutritionist will also help keep check of patient's weight and to keep them on a good caloric diet. The goal is to help patients feel well during their treatment. In fact, many women are able to continue with their usual routines, with only minor disturbances in their daily schedule.

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