I recently went to the annual conference of the American Association for Cancer Research and learned about a way that each one of us can actually help find a cure for breast cancer. We often read about exciting research breakthroughs in understanding cancer. These breakthroughs have to be further refined in the lab and then tested in real women in properly supervised "clinical trials".
Real women of all types are needed for these tests – whether you have had breast cancer or not, all races and nationalities, all ages – as large and diverse a pool as possible. With the Avon Foundation for Women, Dr. Susan Love, a well-known breast cancer specialist, has set up a program called Army of Women (http://www.armyofwomen.org/) to address this need. AoW evaluates potential trials and then sends information about the approved studies to women who have signed up with them. You decide whether you are interested in a study and then you follow the instructions to volunteer.
It is as simple as joining a mailing list and then choosing which studies appeal to you. And you can help by forwarding the emails to other women who might be interested. At the AACR conference, I naturally chose mainly sessions focused on breast and ovarian cancer. In several sessions, researchers talked about either the delays caused by the difficulty in collecting volunteers for clinical trials or about working with the Army of Women. The Army is making a difference. And we can make a difference. I signed up in about a minute, and I invite you to consider it. The basic info is (http://www.armyofwomen.org/armyfaq)
By Didi Lacher - July 21, 2010