Joan Lunden says she took the advice of a physician who urged women with dense fibrous breast tissue to undergo additional ultrasound testing.
“What was once normal was now washed away by those powerful three words: you have cancer,” she recalls. Lunden, who signed up for the tests after interviewing the physician for a health segment, credits a newly available personalized cancer treatment with saving her life.
The former Good Morning America co-host shared her story at the Turning the Tide Against Cancer (T3) 2017 Conference on June 29 in Washington, D.C.
Patients, physicians, pharmaceutical companies, and insurance providers came together to focus on the role of the patient in cancer research and treatment.
American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) CEO Margaret Foti, Ph.D., said the “discussions will catalyze a new phase to ensure patients’ voices become an even more integral part of cancer research.”
George Demetri M.D., director of Sarcoma and Bone Onocology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute described the necessity of an ecosystem in cancer research that promotes innovative science. Increasing patient access to personalized treatments and incorporating patient values are areas of opportunity to translate research into practice, he noted. “Cancer is a model of curiosity-driven research. This is the future: it must be funded,” he said.