As I’ve said before, breast cancer has been a crash course for me. In some ways it seems unbelievable that I was diagnosed almost 2 years ago because I am surprised I have picked up as much as I have. Digesting what I have learned and putting this knowledge into something legible is the true challenge, however.
One of the things that I’ve learned is that while I’m good to go for now–no signs of cancer, no evidence of the disease, feeling very healthy–there is absolutely no guarantee that I’ll remain cancer free for the rest of my life. I am concerned about recurrence; however, the thing I truly fear is MBC. Metastatic breast cancer (MBC) occurs when breast cancer spreads to distant parts of the body such as the lung, liver, bones and brain. Each year, 41,000 Americans die of the disease. Of the more than 200,000 Americans diagnosed annually with breast cancer, 30% will metastasize. This can occur immediately or more than 30 years later. ONLY 6% to 10% are metastatic when first diagnosed.
If this factoid concerns you, I strongly encourage you to check out the amazing program–METAvivor
The METAvivor Research Program was established in 2009 with the singular goal of funding research to end death from metastatic breast cancer (MBC).
The METAvivor Research Program intends to change this statistic by
- Awarding research grants for projects with the potential to move us closer to transitioning the now fatal disease to a permanently survivable condition with a decent quality of life
- Enhancing understanding of the disease through increased communication between the cancer researchers, oncologists and MBC patients
- Supporting the METAvivor 30% for 30% campaign
METAvivor’s research grants are funded through donations and proceeds from fundraisers. METAvivor is the only US non-profit awarding research grants solely for metastatic breast cancer. The organization is run entirely by volunteers, the majority of whom have the disease.