Friday, October 17, 2008

Breastfeeding and getting a biopsy?

I meant to blog about this some time ago and am just now getting to it! There's an exciting research study underway right now that I wanted to tell you all about. I found out about it at the Motherwear Breastfeeding Blog.

Ever had a lump in your breast? I have. I was in college and it was right after my mom had been diagnosed and treated for her breast cancer. It scared me to death! Luckily a mammogram/ultrasound confirmed it was nothing to worry about, and I don't even think the lump is there anymore. I am so thankful it happened then and not now, when I am in the middle of breastfeeding my daughter. Because you know what? Most doctors don't like to do mammograms on breastfeeding women. They want them to wean first. That's a heck of a choice, isn't it? Should I prematurely wean my child, or allow something that has even the remotest chance of being malignant to spread? No woman should have to make this decision.

That's where Dr. Kathleen Arcaro comes in. Most of you probably don't realize that when our milk comes out, it takes some cells from our milk ducts with it. These exfoliated epithelial cells can be found in our milk. Dr. Arcaro has proposed that these cells may be able to serve as early indicators of breast cancer, or even determine one's risk for it. Instead of having one's breast squished agonizingly flat between two plates, or having a part of it painfully cut out in a biopsy, we could just pump a little breastmilk and take it to a lab! Exciting, right?

Well, what Dr. Arcaro needs are some subjects for her study. It would involve mailing some of your pumped milk to her lab. If you are breastfeeding and are scheduled for a biopsy, PLEASE email Tanya at motherwearblog(at)gmail(dot)com, or go to her original post (I link to it above) to find Dr. Arcaro's contact info. If you know anyone who may be scheduled for a biopsy, please pass this info along.


And on a completely unrelated note...

There are only a few more hours left to enter to win an Earthlust Bottle!

And to find out how I feel about bottled water, go to my other blog.

6 comments:

Cheryl Lage said...

That is COMPLETELY fascinating!
Love all the research being done. :)

Happy almost weekend!

withwomanwithchild said...

there is a doctor in tryon nc (tere are others, obviously, but this guy is closest to us)nwho does a heat/ultrasound/cutting edge technology breast diagnostic in place of the mammy.

Rissa said...

Hey there,
This is a great post! I am so glad that there are doctors trying to come up with alternatives. It gives me hope. :)
Also, I posted a response to your comment in the comments section of my post on contraception. It's kinda long...sorry. :) I'm hoping I don't sound ridiculous. Please feel free to email if you want to talk more! I so appreciate your contribution to the discussion! :)

Melissa said...

I love this study! Thank you for telling us about it!

Vicky said...

Just need to add my 2 cents in the bottled H2O topic. :)

"Bottled Water" is not a single animal, you have spring water, tap water, distilled water. The best water is distilled water, and next after that is spring water. Tap water may do more harm than good, partly because the fluoride is bad for your overall health, and besides that it increases the probability of forming kidney stones. Drinking hard H20 increases urinary calcium concentration by 50% compared to soft botted H2O. What does that mean to most people...probably nothing if you are not prone to kidney stones or have kidney problems. Even with a filter hooked up to your tap water more than likely isn't the answer. Unless you have an extra 5 or 6 hundred to spend.

One thing that you want to beware of, when using plastic to contain water or food, is extremes of temperature. Leaving them in the sun, freezing them, or mic'ing them are all no-no's for they cause new and toxic chemicals to form, which would affect your overall health in a bad way. How are you going to know whether your bottled water has been stored in the sun, during shipping, and become overheated, or not?

It's a tough decision. Unfortunately, one I make often. For me personally, I think the pros of bottled water outweigh the cons at this point.

Melissa said...

I posted my meme thanks for the tagg!