Isolation is a common feeling experienced by people with metastatic breast cancer (MBC). One way to overcome this challenge is to get in touch with someone who is going through the same things as you through an online or in-person peer-support community.
BCSM is a volunteer organization, dedicated to empowering those affected by breast cancer. The organization provides evidence-based information in a supportive and compassionate manner via social media using #BCSM.
Breastcancer.org provides an online forum for people with breast cancer. Visit https://community.breastcancer.org/ to find a discussion topic that fits your needs.
Cancer Support Community (CSC) has many support opportunities. The ‘Living Room’ is an online support group that connects those with cancer to discuss issues that are important to them. Throughout the United States, as well as abroad, CSC has cancer support groups that have educational and recreational programs throughout the year.
Inspire's Advanced Breast Cancer forum brings together people living with MBC and those who are supporting them in their journey.
Living Beyond Breast Cancer (LBBC) provides programs and services to help people whose lives have been impacted by breast cancer. Their goal is to provide easily accessible information, community support that you can trust, and respect for you and your situation.
The Male Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) is an organization dedicated to raising awareness for male breast cancer. Visit their website for a variety of resources to help men impacted by breast cancer access support.
Metastatic Breast Cancer Network (MBCN) is an advocacy organization that provides information and resources for people living with MBC, and champions research and clinical trials. MBCN provides a number of peer-to-peer support opportunities, including:
METAvivor is dedicated to the specific fight of women and men living with stage 4 MBC.
METAvivor has trained, peer-led support groups throughout the United States. Peer-to-peer support groups are a wonderful way to meet with other MBC patients to exchange advice, compare treatment facilities, learn about local resources and simply enjoy the company of others who are on the same journey. METAvivor encourages the creation of additional peer support groups if there is not one already started in your area.
SHARE Cancer Support's mission is to create and sustain a supportive network and community of women affected by cancer.
SHARE offers support groups every month for women with MBC, over the phone and in-person, including a group for young women with MBC.
For a Spanish-language MBC group, visit latina.sharecancersupport.org.
The Sharsheret peer support network connects women with breast cancer one-on-one with others who share similar diagnoses and experiences.
You can provide support by becoming a Sharsheret “Link,” or peer supporter, and enjoy the rewarding experience of helping other women across the country. These confidential “Links” connect over the phone and through email, and offer invaluable friendship and support.
Young Survival Coalition (YSC) is an organization dedicated to the critical issues unique to young women who are diagnosed with breast cancer.
YSC provides a variety of resources for young women living with MBC, including online video support groups, SurvivorLink mentorship program and local face-to-face groups.
Some cancer centers have organized peer-to-peer groups. Ask your doctor or care coordinator if this is available where you are being treated. Don’t hesitate to ask your treatment team to be connected with other patients you would feel comfortable with – like those around your age and/or with similar cancer experiences.
The organizations listed above are representative only, and not comprehensive. These organizations are independently operated and not managed by Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation. Novartis assumes no responsibility for any information they may provide.
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Potential side effects of treatment vary for each therapy, and every person responds differently. Talk to your health care team about the potential side effects of treatment, including side effects like anxiety, depression or insomnia. If your health care team understands the side effects you are experiencing, they can better help you manage them.
Some of the women we surveyed said it was sometimes hard to take their cancer treatment as prescribed. It is okay to feel this way, but if you do, let your health care team know. Cancer treatment is complicated, so do not make changes before talking to your health care providers, even if you are experiencing side effects. The more information you communicate, the more they will be able to help you.