Beyond Pink Ribbons

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Peggy Orenstein, contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine, and author of Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture, questions the focus on breast cancer awareness and screening in light of the latest research, especially if it comes at the expense of research into treatment and a cure.

I think that one of the big issues, in terms of the cultural piece of this, is that our anxiety and fear about breast cancer (which is real, it's a really scary disease, I don’t want to minimize it, 40,000 women a year die of it), but how we manage that fear and how we understand risk and how we approach it is really important to making good medical decisions and good funding decisions.

--Peggy Orenstein


Peggy Orenstein

Comments [14]


Why aren't we spending more money on research to PREVENT breast cancers in the first place (and all cancers for that matter)?? Too much money to be made by having cancer! Shameful.

Apr. 30 2013 02:12 PM
Nancy Dwyer Chapman from Bronxville, NY

Concerning Ms. Orenstein's comments on DCIS - my sister-in-law, an internal medicine physician, was diagnosed with DCIS, stage 0, in January 2001, following a mammogram. She underwent a mastectomy but no other treatment. She had a recurrence seven years later on the same side, Stage 2, and had more surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. She is presently cancer-free.

DCIS is not a diagnosis to take lightly.

I'm a nascent Stage 3 ovarian cancer survivor who responded extraordinarily well to intensive, dose-dense chemotherapy and cytoreduction surgery. I respect the expertise of my oncologist and my gynecological oncology surgeon and deplore the shrill advocates of fringe "therapies." My sister-in-law and I are testaments to the efficacy of modern, tested oncology protocols.

Apr. 30 2013 11:34 AM

There are many correlations between Peggy Orenstein's observations and Siddhartha Mukherjee observations in his book, "The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer".

We seem to be failing in approach.

Apr. 30 2013 11:31 AM
The Truth from Becky "I love the color pink"

I mean other than chemo and radiation treatment??

Apr. 30 2013 11:28 AM
The Truth from Becky

We have spent DECADES literally in the research phase why is their still no cure for cancer???

Apr. 30 2013 11:26 AM
Shelley from Wisconsin

Can Ms. Orenstein discuss thermography as an alternative to mammography, please?

Apr. 30 2013 11:26 AM

I did have DCIS in 1998 and it was Stage 1, not stage 0. I discovered it in a self-exam; in never showed up on a mammogram at the time, nor did the recurrence I had three years later, although it was palpable. Recently, a study showed self-exam was not as important. Had it not been for that, I would never have discovered my original tumor. Mammograms are now so much more precise and I don't hesitate to have them or yearly MRIs and sonograms.

Apr. 30 2013 11:26 AM
Nancy from Vernon NJ

I have three daughters, two were diagnosed with breast cancer while in their early thirties. Both had bilateral mastectomies and chemo. The older also received radiation. They are both active with an organization called the Young Survivors Coalition, which focuses on helping young women in their recovery.

Apr. 30 2013 11:22 AM

Cancer is a big money machine - you really need to get on your toes, world!!!

Apr. 30 2013 11:17 AM
Carol Davis

I have one word for all women: thermography!

Apr. 30 2013 11:17 AM

Go watch the video of cancer cells under electron microscope with THC them and watch them die through aptosis.

Apr. 30 2013 11:15 AM


Everybody is different and there are many cancers - there is so much BS flying around the world as far as just about ANYTHING medical. I say, do your homework. (Stage 4 lung+)

In 2007 a 15 year old kid at Minuteman Regional High bought some cancerous cells (crayfish stem cells and I think pancreatic) and treat ted them daily for 5 minutes - four days - with a type of Chi Gong - the cells were healed (completed their natural cycles) in 4 days!

There is so much more we have in our access that is not BS!

Apr. 30 2013 11:14 AM
Truth & Beauty from Brooklyn

Why pink? Why pastel pink? It's such an ugly color. Yecch!

Apr. 30 2013 11:08 AM
Jf from Truthland

Cannabis oil cures all cancers. Look it up. Children with lukemia miraculously cured, when doctor expected them to die. Why does npr and wnyc blacklist this when there is so much evidence?

Apr. 30 2013 10:17 AM

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