Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day: October 13th


October 13th is Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day.

One might wonder why it is necessary to parcel out a specific day during the month of October to take note of something like metastatic breast cancer (BC Mets). After all, the month is already dedicated to breast cancer awareness.

Don’t we already know everything there is to know about this disease? Aren’t we already aware that breast cancer metastasis (i.e., the stage 4 disease that spreads to other parts of the body like lungs, liver, . . . → Read More: Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day: October 13th

“Faun and Me”

Beth Gainer Photo

Beth Gainer is an author and breast cancer survivor who writes the blog, “Calling the Shots.” She frequently posts excerpts from her upcoming book with the same title, Calling the Shots: Coaching Your Way Through the Healthcare System. The book is a primer for how to advocate for oneself through a difficult medical landscape. It includes information about finding the right doctors, how to deal with difficult medical administrators, and how to empower oneself by seizing the reins of one’s medical care, whatever the medical outcome. Pink Ribbon Blues republished . . . → Read More: “Faun and Me”

The real scandal: science denialism at Susan G. Komen for the Cure®

Journalist Christie Aschwanden has written one of the finest essays I’ve read about the “false narrative” (i.e., the fairytale notion that breast cancer is a uniformly progressive disease that starts small and only grows and spreads if you don’t stop it in time), and its use in selling wholesale screening, along with accompanying lifestyle and product placements, to the masses. With permission, the Pink Ribbon Blues Blog republishes Christie Aschwanden’s essay: “The real scandal: science denialism at Susan G. Komen for the Cure,” originally published . . . → Read More: The real scandal: science denialism at Susan G. Komen for the Cure®

13. Medical Progress and Stage 4 Breast Cancer, Re-Learning the Lessons from Elizabeth Edwards’ Death

John and Elizabeth Edwards, 2007. Photo Credit: Sara Davis – Getty Images

Originally Published March 14, 2011.

Elizabeth Edwards died from stage 4 breast cancer (also known as metastatic breast cancer) on December 7th, 2010 at the age of 61. Ms. Edwards was a well-known public figure, notably the wife of former Senator John Edwards, and an accomplished lawyer, author, and health advocate. Her death inspired new discussions of Stage 4 breast cancer, finally shining a light on what has been a relatively invisible segment . . . → Read More: 13. Medical Progress and Stage 4 Breast Cancer, Re-Learning the Lessons from Elizabeth Edwards’ Death

4. Factoids, Impressions, and Impressions

The “Special Breast Cancer Awareness Issue” floods the populace in October. It might be in a small town in upstate New York, a metropolitan city in Florida, or a magazine dedicated to the Jersey Shore. It doesn’t really matter. The template is the same. Shape the culture, fuel the industry, and do it in the name of “awareness.” Rachel C. of The Cancer Culture Chronicles exposes the content of one of these magazines. “Breast Cancer Awareness Jersey Shore Style!” was originally published on The . . . → Read More: 4. Factoids, Impressions, and Impressions

Every Silver Lining Has A Cloud

Cumulus Clouds:

Much of my life revolves around cancer, both professionally and personally. My ongoing research of breast cancer culture and industry that started over a decade ago entails an immersion into the topic that involves incessant reading of medical studies, news articles, advocacy materials, public policies, and personal stories as well as systematic observation, interviewing, writing, and networking. It is my everyday work. Cancer also permeates my personal life. Many of my colleagues over the years and some of my closest friends . . . → Read More: Every Silver Lining Has A Cloud

Surveying the BC Mets Community – [Survey Now Closed]

SURVEY NOW CLOSED. Dian Corneliussen-James, also known as CJ, founded METAvivor Research and Support, Inc. in 2007 to increase awareness, support, and research specifically oriented to metastatic breast cancer, or BC Mets.

Although there are an estimated 150-250 thousand people in the United States with BC Mets, little is really known about this population. According to  NCI data the five-year survival rate is only about 20 percent and the average prognosis is two to four years. Metastatic breast cancer accounts for 98-100 percent of the nearly 41,000 women and . . . → Read More: Surveying the BC Mets Community – [Survey Now Closed]

Enter the Komen Bandits -- Racing With A Message for BC Mets

This weekend marks the 22nd annual Susan G. Komen Global Race for the Cure® 5K at the National Mall in Washington, DC. Nearly 40,000 people participated and the event raised more than $5 million. Reports of the race festivities are awash with celebrity, festivity, performance, and unbridled enthusiasm.

Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s founder, Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker, “charged up the crowd, noting that the sea of pink making their way up the National Mall was a bold statement by this community that we will not rest . . . → Read More: Enter the Komen Bandits — Racing With A Message for BC Mets

“Are We Really Racing for a Cure?”

Nancy Stordahl with Sophie and Elsie

Nancy Stordahl lost her mother to breast cancer in 2008. Two years later she too was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her blog Nancy’s Point tries to make sense out of these life-altering situations by sharing her personal experience, advice, and thought-provoking commentary. With precision and gentle humor, Nancy has written about treatment, survivorship, grief, loss, and some of the real concerns she has about current forms of breast cancer awareness and advocacy.

With permission, Pink Ribbon Blues republishes an edited version . . . → Read More: “Are We Really Racing for a Cure?”

Dian Corneliussen-James: A Woman On A Mission

(CJ) Dian Corneliussen-James of METAvivor / Photo Credit: Wendy Marxen, Marxen Consulting LLC

Dian Corneliussen-James, also known as CJ, has a history of helping to find missing persons. Toward the end of her 24-year career as an Air Force Intelligence Officer, Lieutenant Colonel Corneliussen-James took a position in the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) in Washington, D.C., and she continued in that position as a civilian following her Air Force retirement. The DPMO office is tasked with investigating the cases of more than 88 thousand . . . → Read More: Dian Corneliussen-James: A Woman On A Mission

“Pink Ribbon Blues,” Book

Paperback includes new Introduction on fundraising controversies and color insert with images of, and reactions to, the pinking of breast cancer (2012).

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Recent Sulik Interviews

A Year After Bombings, Some Say 'Boston Strong' Has Gone Overboard NPR, All Things Considered

Canadian Mammogram Study KCRW, NPR Affiliate

Breast Cancer: Awareness, Activism & Pinkwashing NPR Charlotte

Buying Pink Al Jazeera's The Stream Watch »

The Pink Backlash Orlando Sentinel

Preventative Mastectomies: Disease and Deception Listen to BlogTalkRadio »

Angelina Jolie and the 'Breast Cancer Gene' Listen to KCRW »

Our Feel-Good War on Breast Cancer. The New York Times Magazine.

The Story Behind the Pink Ribbon Campaign Sisters Talk Radio

WISH Interview Women's International Summit for Health

Making Cancer About The Patient, Not The Body Part CBS Pittsburgh

Sexy breast cancer campaigns anger many patients USA Today

The perils of pink The Daily

Komen pink campaign creates breast-cancer blues for some Dallas Morning News

A yellow flag for the NFL's pink New York Daily

Gayle Sulik named #7 in SharecareNow’s Top 10 Online Influencers in Breast Cancer

"Breast cancer cancer causes so easily derailed" Philly Inquirer

"Komen Charity Under Microscope for Funding, Science" Reuters

"The Fight Against Cancer - And Abortion?

"Susan G. Komen For the Cure defunds Planned Parenthood." In Deep with Angie Coiro

"Amid Breast Cancer Month, Is there Pink Fatigue?" NPR's All Things Considered

"How is Breast Cancer Culture Undermining Women's Health?" America’s Radio News Network

"Pink Ribbon Culture and Breast Cancer" The Kojo Nnamdi Show

"The Big Business of Breast Cancer" 
Marie Claire

"Does Breast Cancer Awareness Month Crowd Out Other Diseases?" Slate

"Pink Inc. Has Many Starting to See Red" The Sacramento Bee

"Get Your Pink Off" Ottawa Citizen

"Komen Pink Ribbons Raise Green and Questions" USA Today