I have recently become involved in a really important project in Ottawa. Project leMonADE’s mission is to provide women and men with their full options of surgical treatments for breast cancer. This project was started by my friend Melanie after facing a “blip” with breast cancer. Here is Melanie’s story:
In April 2011, Melanie Adrian was diagnosed with stage II invasive breast cancer. She was in her thirties, a law professor, surfer, hobby photographer, and had recently graduated from Harvard – she was devastated by the news. She sought out the surgical and oncological options that were available to treat the large tumor. Again and again she was told by surgeon after surgeon in her hometown of Ottawa that aggressive surgery – in the form of a modified radical mastectomy – was her best option.
After she did her own extensive research, she did not have a modified radical mastectomy. She opted instead to have a skin-sparing mastectomy. This procedure removes the tumor but preserves the skin (and possibly nipple) and includes an immediate reconstruction.
Melanie’s choice is not every person’s preference in the treatment of breast cancer, but at Project LeMonADE we believe strongly that a full set of options should be presented to everyone at the time of diagnosis. It’s what we call informed consent. Get on board. Take charge of your health. Be the decision-maker. Be the Choice.
Project leMonADE is working to create a short video that explains all of the surgical options for the treatment of breast cancer, and then to disseminate this video via social media.
Where do I come in? I am on the board of advisors as a ‘social media guru’ and it is a complete honour to be helping Melanie. And scary and intimidating too.
Yesterday a number of us who are involved in the project gathered at Melanie’s house to shoot a trailer to promote the video that leMonADE is creating. It was loads of fun working with such amazing people and I can’t wait to see the result.
I would love love love it if you follow leMonADE on twitter.
And if you could like our Facebook page that would be nice too.
Here are a few snaps from our day yesterday. Lovely people!