All posts by bcsurgery

Kathleen Galligan update

We’re happy to report that Kathleen Galligan’s sentinel lymph node biopsy came back clean. Great news that this cancer was found before it spread outside the breast. She will, however, return for a second surgery at the end of the month because the tissue they removed still had cancer in its margins. After that, radiation. In all, it looks like quite a treatable cancer. Kathleen is the same upbeat, positive radiant woman she always has been. The support from her family and friends and the Detroit Free Press features department meal train orchestrated by Mark Stryker have been especially appreciated.

Diet and breast cancer

Watch that burger intake, girls.

Michigan State University researcher Sandra Haslam, Ph.D., says girls who eat diets high in animal fats during puberty – whether they become overweight or not – may be at higher risk of getting breast cancer. Haslam spoke Monday at a community outreach program in East Lansing to explain three important breast cancer studies underway at MSU.

Research by Kathleen Gallo, Ph.D., is looking at better understanding what contributes to the spread of cancer, or metastasis, and developing new drug or drug cocktails for aggressive tumors likely to spread.

Eran Andrechek, Ph.D., is developing a new computer model that will help determine cancer patient’s best individual treatment, based on an analysis of a tumor’s characteristics and other factors.

Strength is Beauty

cheryl7crCheryl Perkins, a labor and delivery nurse at Hutzel Hospital was diagnosed with a 2b, triple-negative tumor in 2003 when her four children were still small.  She made them a promise to fight it.  You can see her Ford Warriors in Pink video here.






Kelly Rothe, 20, pictured here and in our banner photo, is working on her certification to teach special ed.  She lost her mother to breast cancer at the age of 9 and tested positive for the BRCA1 gene mutation.  On May 9th she had a preventative double mastectomy.  “I may not be able to breast feed, but I’ll be alive to have kids,” she said.  She holds the motto she lives by:  She believed she could so she did.

Mastectomy versus lumpectomy

Mastectomy now is more common than lumpectomy, a significant trend in the last decade, say Dr. Lisa Newman and Dr. Adeyiza Momoh, a top breast cancer surgery and construction team at the University of Michigan. It makes the decision about mastectomy versus lumpectomy particularly important these days, they say. These choices will be explored in our new book and on Add your voice.



Work in progress!

Had a great interview today with Dr. Michael Meininger, a Detroit-area plastic surgeon, for my upcoming breast cancer surgery book. There sure is a lot happening I am eager to tell women about. So many options but still so many questions. I am a life-long reporter on breast health. The book will focus on stories of women describing the choices and steps they made along the way. Please share your stories with us at It’s important we build a national network where women can find and share reliable and insightful answers to their questions, as told by other women and their doctors.