One of the favorite parts of my job is to educate fellow professionals. The word, doctor, comes from the Latin, docere, to teach. And I love teaching.
This Monday, June 16, 2014, I will be teaching at the monthly meeting of the East Tennessee Association of Advanced Nurse Practitioners about the latest advances and the future of breast cancer.
We will touch on many advances in breast cancer, and one of the most significant is Next Generation sequencing, an advanced technology that allows the characterization of multiple genes at once. This technology was developed as part of the human genome project and can now be used to more efficiently identify potential genetic mutations that lead to the development of breast and other cancers. Please see my previous article on Next Generation sequencing.
I will also be discussing some of the latest advances in breast cancer surgery. First, I will discuss the new recommendations regarding margins. We used to insist on a 1-2mm margin, but the new guidelines just state “no tumor on ink.” Again, please see my article, Margins! Margins! Margins!, for a more thorough discussion. I will discuss the role of radiation in treating breast cancer in the axillary (or armpit) lymph nodes. Newer data is coming out that suggests radiation to the axilla can be just as effective as surgery of the axilla, but with half the risk of lymphedema. I will also discuss the need for chemotherapy prior to surgery in Stage II, Her2+ breast cancer and why this is a more effective treatment strategy.
Lastly, I will be discussing the revolution in nanotechnology and how this emerging technology will be used in the fight against breast cancer. We will discuss nanobots, buckyballs, nanotubes and more applications. Treatment for breast cancer is going to become more pinpoint and more effective such that one day, the surgeon may not be needed. Nanotechnology has the potential to deliver chemotherapy directly to breast cancer cells and to nowhere else in the body so that there are less side effects from chemotherapy. But nanotechnology also has the potential to use light, which can activate chemical inside a buckyball, to destroy a breast cancer, avoiding the need for surgery. Wouldnt that be amazing!
The future is here. Now let’s integrate it into our practice.
If you are an Advanced Nurse Practitioner and would like to attend the lecture, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. The lecture will be at Peerless restaurant on June 16, 2014 at 6:00pm.
We know you’ll be glad you came!