Archive for February, 2011

Episode 4: Natural Form

By on February 24, 2011 | Category: Featured Content,Webisodes | 3 Comments

In preparation for her surgery, Claudia travels to Los Angeles to visit with old friends and to capture her natural form.

Teri Smieja

By on February 21, 2011 | Category: Previvor Stories | 1 Comment

It may seem weird for a woman who has never had breast or ovarian cancer to think about it as much as I do. In fact, I thought about it so much I chose to have a prophylactic (refers to the removal of healthy tissue & fat) hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo oopherectomy (BSO) in October 2009, just a few days before my 39th birthday. I also had both of my breasts removed during a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy in February 2010.

While I don’t have breast or ovarian cancer, I do have a genetic mutation of my BRCA1 gene which makes my risk of getting breast cancer up to 87% and makes my ovarian cancer risk up to 44% over my lifetime. The average woman has an 8% chance. While science has come a long way, at this point in time, the best option for a woman with this mutation to avoid getting breast or ovarian cancer is to have her breasts and ovaries removed before the cancer strikes. In other words, the best way to fight cancer for us, to not get it in the first place, by removing our healthy breasts and ovaries. Read more …


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