Breast Cancer Panel

Breast Cancer Awareness Panel
October 29, 2013

UMass physicians to speak today on breast cancer

• With 485 female employees and a student body with over 30% female students, those numbers should ensure a packed house today as WPI recognizes Breast Cancer Awareness Month with a panel of UMass Memorial physicians to speak about breast cancer.

The Brown Bag Presentation will be held Tuesday, Oct. 29, at noon in Higgins House Great Hall.

On the docket are Mary Lopresti, DO, discussing prevention and screening; B. Marie Ward, MD, management of breast cancer; and Ashling O’Connor, MD, examining management of high risk patients.

O’Connor plans to discuss the types of screening available, who should be screened, and when women should have these tests done. It is her hope that all women will realize that “the key to treating breast cancer is early detection by screening. I hope to help empower people to make the right screening choices for their individual circumstances,” she says

Behind the Pink

Liz Tomaszewski, WPI’s facilities systems manager and sustainability coordinator, explains that in a recent Healthy Herd meeting, a discussion on how to engage the community in healthier lifestyles raised the suggestion to bring in speakers on particular health topics. Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and Tomaszewski is a breast cancer survivor, she offered to round up speakers for the event.

Tomaszewski serves on the board of the Pink Revolution, a nonprofit group affiliated with UMass Medical School and UMass Memorial, which fundraises for and educates breast cancer patients and survivors in Central Massachusetts.

“Through this organization, I have met some amazing and dedicated doctors who offered to serve on a panel to talk to our community members about prevention, risk, and care,” she explains.

One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

Before Tomaszewski was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago, she never gave it a passing thought. Only after her diagnosis did she learn that one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. As she puts it, that’s a frightening percentage.

Yet, the knowledge she has gained through her treatment and discovery in part fueled this luncheon discussion.

“There are some things that we can all do to make our lives healthier and reduce our risks,” says Tomaszewski.  “I hope that people who attend this presentation will become more aware of breast cancer and what they can do to minimize the likelihood of receiving this diagnosis.”

The Brown Bag Presentation will be held Tuesday, Oct. 29, at noon in Higgins House Great Hall. Bring your lunch; coffee, tea, and cookies will be provided. To register or to get more information, visit HERE.

By Doreen Manning