Complete Book of Breast Care


Written by esteemed New York obstetrician/gynecologist Niels Lauersen and women's health writer Eileen Stukane, The Complete Book of Breast Care offers the cutting-edge research and professional guidance you need to maintain the lifelong health of your breasts and to combat cancer at any age. One out of every eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime; now this revolutionary health maintenance and disease prevention guide addresses women's concerns about their breasts with warmth and candor....
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Written by esteemed New York obstetrician/gynecologist Niels Lauersen and women's health writer Eileen Stukane, The Complete Book of Breast Care offers the cutting-edge research and professional guidance you need to maintain the lifelong health of your breasts and to combat cancer at any age. One out of every eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime; now this revolutionary health maintenance and disease prevention guide addresses women's concerns about their breasts with warmth and candor. From the first sign of any problem, through diagnosis, treatment, and recovery, Lauersen and Stukane reveal state-of-the-art discoveries and advances in technologies, treatments, medications, and surgical procedures. However, The Complete Book of Breast Care is just as much about preventing breast cancer as it is about early detection and successful recovery. The time to take disease prevention seriously is now, especially if you are a woman with a family history of breast cancer. Lauersen and Stukane delve into the preventive power of exercise and nutrition (including cancer-fighting phytochemicals and antioxidants) and the roles of stress and the environment. They discuss the potential risks of replacement hormones, fertility drugs, implants, and birth control pills, and the effects that family history, pregnancy, and radiation can have on your breasts. Lauersen and Stukane offer easily implementable recommendations for altering your lifestyle and direct you to the best sites on the Internet for the latest-breaking news on breast health care.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
From the team that wrote Listen to Your Body comes this authoritative, comprehensive guide to breast care. Obstetrician/gynecologist Lauersen of New York City's Lenox Hill Hospital and health writer Stukane take a confidence-inspiring stance that emphasizes the importance of preventive health care, understanding normal changes in breasts from puberty on, and-very importantly-trusting one's instincts. The impact of exercise, diet, stress, pregnancy and environmental factors are considered, as are oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy. For those dissatisfied with their breasts' appearance, there are clear explanations of the surgical options. While minor breast problems are discussed, cancer gets the most attention. There is information on new detection methods, various types of biopsies and the numerous surgical procedures now available. Breast cancer patients facing radiation therapy or chemotherapy will learn just what to expect; those opting for reconstruction will find the line drawings and photographs reassuring. The resources section, with its tips on locating up-to-date breast cancer information on the Internet, is an added bonus. (Nov.)
Library Journal
This book by noted obstetrican/gynecologist Lauersen and women's health and nutrition writer Stukane is intended to give the general reader comprehensive coverage of all aspects of breast care. The authors previously collaborated on the best-selling Listen to Your Body (Berkeley, 1987). This new work is a disappointing effort from two such distinguished authors. It includes information on healthy breasts as well as various topics related to breast cancer, cosmetic surgery, healthy diet, and even choosing the correct bra size. While some parts of the text are clearly and concisely written and easy to understand, much of the information on breast cancer is complex and confusing. The organization leaves something to be desired as well; information about similar topics is scattered throughout the book, and lengthy chapter titles prevent easy location of areas of interest. Additionally, titling the introduction "Your Breasts: Your Pride and Your Worry" seems so ridiculous as to be almost offensive; are women to be proud of, and judged on, this aspect of their physical appearance? Libraries would do better with Miriam Stoppard's The Breast Book (LJ 6/1/96) or Dr. Susan Love's Breast Book (LJ 6/1/95). Recommended only for comprehensive collections.Stacey Hathaway, Fordham Health Sciences Lib., Wright State Univ., Dayton, Ohio
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780517370315
  • Publisher: Random House Value Publishing, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/28/1999
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback

Meet the Author

Niels H. Lauersen, M. D., Ph.D., is a noted board-certified New York obstetrician/ gynecologist and author, an attending physician at New York's Lenox Hill Hospital, and a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at New York Medical College. He is the author of Childbirth with Love and It's Your Pregnancy, and the coauthor of It's Your Body, Getting Pregnant, and The Endometriosis Answer Book. Along with Eileen Stukane, he is the author of Listen to Your Body, PMS/Premenstrual Syndrome and You, and You're in Charge: A Teenage Girl's Guide to Sex and Her Body. He is a regular guest on local and national radio shows and an extensive contributor to medical journals.

Eileen Stukane is a writer who specializes in women's health and nutrition. In addition to writing several women's health titles with Niels Lauersen (above), she is the author of You're Pregnant and Your Dreams Are Driving You Crazy. Her "Healthy Eating" nutrition column ran in Food and Wine for eight years and her articles have appeared in such national publications as Self, Redbook, Cosmopolitan, and Harper's Bazaar.

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Read an Excerpt

Your Breasts: Your Pride and Your Worry

Your breasts are glands involved in your reproductive system, but their significance goes far beyond their function. Breasts are part of a woman's identity, visible signs of her sex, erogenous zones, and with motherhood, sources of love and nourishment for her babies. Recognizing the vital and varied roles of breasts, we urge you to become involve in their health care before a problem occurs. Every year about 180,000 women are diagnosed with invasive breast cancer and about 44,000 women die of hte disease. Our aim for The Complete Book of Breast Care is: to offer you the most up-to-date discoveries in preventive health care, along with the latest advancements in diagnosies and treatments, to increase your knowledge about what is going on inside your breasts, and to return to you confidence in your body. Daunting as it may seem, it is important for you to be aware of the latest information about preventive care, diagnostic techniques, and improved treatments. The quality of your bre
ast health care improves when you can bring your own understanding of the facts to your doctor's office.


In 1982, when we wrote Listen to Your Body to arm women with information about their gynecological health, women were expected to discover their own breast lumps. At that time, we urged you and your doctor to integrate breast examinations into regular gynecological checkups. We also advised you to ask your doctor to explain fibrocystic breast disease and other benign breast conditions. With activism so strong today, it seems hard to imagine that awareness of breasthealth care has only existed for about 20 years. But as recently as the early 1970s, when a woman went for a biopsy, she never knew whether her body would be whole afterward. She signed an agreement that stated if cancer was discovered, while she was still anesthetized the surgeon had her permission to perform a radical mastectomy, removing her breast, the muscles on her chest wall, and the lymph nodes under her arm. This was the famous one-step procedure. Breast cancer was dealt with quickly, in a manner doctors considered "efficient." Now we all know differently.

It was not until the mid-1970s that attitudes began to change. Betty Ford and Happy Rockefeller, admired women in the public eye, openly discussed their breast cancers. Medical writer Rose Kushner was diagnosed with breast cancer and she became an energetic campaigner against the one-step procedure and for increasing funds for breast cancer research and encouraging breast conservation. Doctors began to consider a possible link between breast cancer and hormones--that the high levels of hormones in birth control pills (levels much higher than in today's pills) might stimulate breast tumors. Once regarded as cosmetic features that could be enlarged or reduced at will, breasts now became a health concern. Discussions of mammography and breast self-examinations appeared in newspapers, magazines, and on television. Everyone was talking about breast health care, but what was clearly growing out of all the talk was an awareness tinged with fear. Women became afraid to touch their breasts. What if you found a lump? Then what would you do?

Our belief has always been that the more you know, the less fearful you will be. You are not facing decisions about your breast health care alone. Your doctor is there to help you, but to have a valuable partnership, you must bring your own understanding to the table, and that's where we come in. Many women become actively informed about their breast health care only after something goes wrong. Our goal is to increase your understanding of your breasts right now. In The Complete Book of Breast Care, we have set out to produce an up-to-the-minute guide for breast health care that is easy to read and enjoyable.

Also, to keep you up to date, we have included a special section on computer research (see Part VI, "Resources") to guide you through the on-line networks that may be available to you. You can learn how to travel the electronic information highway and locate the latest on breast health care. To our knowledge, The Complete Book of Breast Care is the first women's health book to pinpoint the best breast health care information in cyberspace.

Today, in the tumult of health care, when major institutions like the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society are at odds over when women should have annual mammograms, when fraud is discovered in a prestigious 15-year lumpectomy study, and researchers are in dispute about whether diet plays a role in breast health, it is more important than ever that you trust your source of information and your instincts.
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Table of Contents

Author's Note
Introduction - Your Breasts: Your Pride and Your Worry 3
Ch. 1 Understanding the Basics: Your Breasts Over Your Lifetime 13
Ch. 2 Transformed During Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Your Breasts Are (Possibly) Better Off Afterward 29
Ch. 3 A Breast Self-Examination: When You Have a Good Teacher, You Can Overcome Your Ambivalence 47
Ch. 4 When to Have a Mammogram: A Recommended Timetable 58
Ch. 5 Beyond Mammography: Other High-Tech Breast Tests You May Want 74
Ch. 6 Yes, You Can Eat to Keep Your Breasts Healthy: The Latest on Foods That Fight Illness 80
Ch. 7 The Surprising Relationship Between Exercise and Your Breasts: Another Reason to Work Out 102
Ch. 8 Pollutants, Electromagnetic Fields, and Radiation: Exploring the Link Between Your Environment and Your Breasts 112
Ch. 9 The Mind/Body Connection: Stress and Your Breasts 125
Ch. 10 How Birth Control Pills and Fertility Drugs Affect Your Breasts 135
Ch. 11 How to Decide Whether Hormone Replacement Therapy Is for You...Even If You Have Survived Breast Cancer 141
Ch. 12 When You Want to Reshape Your Breasts: The Latest Word on Cosmetic Surgery 151
Ch. 13 When You Are at High Risk for Breast Cancer: Should You Consider Preventive Mastectomy? 175
Ch. 14 Nipples That Have Discharge, Soreness, or Other Conditions 183
Ch. 15 A Difference in Your Skin Tone 190
Ch. 16 Your Breasts Hurt: Pain All Over or in One Spot 192
Ch. 17 You Find a Lump: It May Not Be Serious But It Should Not Be Ignored 201
Ch. 18 Genetic Codes and More: An Overview of the Growing List of High-Risk Factors for Breast Cancer 215
Ch. 19 A Suspicious Lump: When a Biopsy Is Needed 232
Ch. 20 After the Biopsy: What the Pathology Report Will Tell You 246
Ch. 21 When Your Doctor Says "Surgery," Which Is Best? Lumpectomy Versus Mastectomy 258
Ch. 22 Every Breast Cancer Has a Profile, and You Should Know Yours 279
Ch. 23 What to Expect During Radiotherapy 284
Ch. 24 When You Need Chemotherapy and Hormone Therapy: Seizing the Power of Cancer-Killing Drugs 294
Ch. 25 On the Vanguard of Healing 339
Ch. 26 Breast Reconstruction: Is It for You? 344
Ch. 27 The Wellness Attitude: Healthy Breasts Throughout a Lifetime 370
Resources 373
Going On-Line for Information About Your Breasts: How to Use a Computer to Find Everything You Want to Know 375
Where to Write, Phone, or Fax for Help 388
Bibliography 400
Index 431
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