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Women's Health

Breast Cancer’s “False Narrative” and the Komen Foundation’s Biggest Mistake

“If only it were that simple. As I’ve written previously here, the 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 is flat out wrong. I call it breast cancer’s false narrative, and it’s a fairy tale that Komen has relentlessly perpetuated.

“It was a mistake that most everyone made in the early days. When mammography was new and breast cancer had not yet become a discussion for the dinner table, it really did seem like all it would take to stop breast cancer was awareness and vigilant screening. The thing about the false narrative is that it makes intuitive sense—a tumor starts as one rogue cell that grows out of control, eventually becoming a palpable tumor that gets bigger and bigger until it escapes its local environment and becomes metastatic, when it can kill you. And this story has a grain of truth to it—it’s just that it’s far more complicated than that.

“Years of research have led scientists to discover that breast tumors are not all alike. Some are fast moving and aggressive, others are never fated to metastasize. The problem is that right now we don’t have a surefire way to predict in advance whether a cancer will spread or how aggressive it might become.”

An excellent article, the rest is here and was first published here.



2 thoughts on “Breast Cancer’s “False Narrative” and the Komen Foundation’s Biggest Mistake

  1. That is an interesting article, but I would dispute a couple of important points. “Right now mammography is the best tool we have,” and “We still can’t prevent breast cancer, because we don’t know what causes it.” Since the article does not bother to mention any other tools, besides self-examination, it might seem that those are the only ways to detect breast cancer. Mammography may be the worst tool for detecting it, especially pre-menopause when it is almost useless, and can cause it. To say that we do not know what causes it is even more misleading. While it may be true that it is next to impossible to pinpoint the exact cause of any particular case of breast cancer, several potential causes are fairly well known, and more are highly suspicious. Honoring the precautionary principle would probably prevent most cancers of all varieties, but the Komen Foundation is notorious for ignoring these potential causes. They have conflicts of interest galore. I have to question, are they part of the solution, or part of the problem?

    Posted by Aletha | February 14, 2012, 10:30 pm
  2. Aletha, completely agree. Breast thermography is a much better tool for self-examination. Here’s a good article about what we suspect causes breast cancer: Most of the suspected causes are environmental, pesticides, growth hormones fed to cattle, exposure to nuclear waste, etc.

    Posted by Heart | February 15, 2012, 5:01 am

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