Metastatic Breast Cancer Support Group Program (MBC)

Program Details:

Chair: Laurie Tresa

Our peer led support group is a place to connect with others who are also living with Metastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) and may be going through similar experiences. It is a safe place to express feelings among other who understand what you’re going through and can give you a sense of acceptance through sharing common experiences. Everything that is said in the group is confidential. Although there are no medical professionals or professionals of any type in the group, many members have had similar experiences and can offer valuable information on what to expect along your unexpected journey. They can answer questions and offer advice and encouragement. The group can help ease the feelings of isolation that can separate you from well-meaning but anxious family members and friends.

Usual Meeting Time and Location

Currently, due to COVID we are meeting virtually via Zoom.

This will be reassessed as the fall approaches and members start to feel more comfortable with venturing out. If you are interested, please contact Laurie Tresa at lauriemt@outlook.com.

MBC (metastatic breast cancer) Peer Support Group meets on the second Thursday of each month from 1:00 to 3:30 pm.

  • Location: Churchill Seniors’ Recreation Centre, 345 Richmond Road, Westboro, Ottawa.
  • Drop ins welcome. Entrance off Churchill. Accessible

What is metatstatic breast cancer?

Metastatic breast cancer (MBC), also known as advanced or stage IV, is breast cancer that has spread beyond the breast to other parts of the body. The common places for breast cancer to spread are the bones, lungs, liver, and brain.

Treatment of metastatic breast cancer depends on several factors, including prior treatment history, menopausal status, HR and HER2 status, and where the cancer has spread.

HER2=human epidermal growth factor receptor 2; HR=hormone receptor.

It is normal to feel a great range of emotions when you are first diagnosed with Metastatic Breast Cancer ranging from shock to anger to fear.  you may be overwhelmed with the information on subtype of cancer, treatment plans and other medical terminologies that are being used. You may also have heard a great deal about breast cancer before regarding thing such as pain, hair loss, job loss, and financial concerns and be feeling worried.  As well as worried as to how your family will react and how you are going to continue on with your ‘normal’ life.  You may be asking ‘How will I deal with this?’ ‘Will I live?’

You are getting a lot of information and there will be a lot more to come.  Living Beyond Breast Cancer has devised a handbook that outlines a great deal of information on Metastatic Breast Cancer.  It answers a lot of the questions that you will have on what your diagnosis is and means and how this affects your choices of treatment.  Understanding these concepts will help you in conversations with your health care team as well as help you in making the decisions that you have to make about your treatment as well as give you an understanding of what to expect going forward.

https://www.lbbc.org/learn/types-breast-cancer/metastatic-breast-cancer

You can navigate through the tabs on the left side of the page for different topics.

Try to have some support with you if you need it while reading through these pages. Reading them with your support person will help them understand as well. 

Hugs to everyone and stay strong!

Laurie Tresa, Chair MBC Support Program

For people living with stage 4 breast cancer:

MBC (metastatic breast cancer) Peer Support Group meets on the second Thursday of each month from 1:00 to 3:30 pm.

Location: Churchill Seniors’ Recreation Centre, 345 Richmond Road, Westboro, Ottawa.

Drop ins welcome. Entrance off Churchill. Accessible.

References:

  1. The Canadian Breast Cancer Network (CBCN) produced this guide in partnership with Living Beyond Breast Cancer and the Metastatic Breast Cancer Network.  CBCN is Canada’s leading national patient-driven organization of individuals concerned about breast cancer.  The guide is free of charge.  You can download it at https://cbcn.ca/en/mbc-newly-diagnosed-guide.