After my post last week regarding the mixed data on the value of mammograms, I got a slew of mail the gist of most being, yes but what should I do? The only answer I can give is that you have to decide for yourself what makes the most sense, no easy thing when things aren’t clear cut combined with it being difficult to trust the information you get. Our Bodies Our Selves has an excellent summary of the history of this issue which is informative and I hope useful.
For me, even though I’ve never had to face this disease myself, I find that I am extraordinarily fearful of it, and one of the things that I find empowering is to work on reclaiming the frame in which we talk about breast cancer by refocusing the discussion on cause rather than cure. Clearly the current approach is less than satisfactory in terms of how patients are treated and what we are told about it. Which leads me to highly recommending No Family History, which,
turns the debate about breast cancer upside down by proposing before solutions about prevention, rather searching only for a cure.
There are a lot of unknowns when it comes to breast cancer, and we need to ask some hard questions about what we ‘know’ so far and insist that cause be the starting point for treating this most difficult disease.