Metastatic breast cancer: who listens to patients?

Ten years ago, Angelina Jolie’s campaign gave an incredible boost to awareness and prevention of metastatic breast cancer, a form that affects more than 52,000 women in our country. However, even today, only 20% of Italians have heard of the BRCA genetic mutation, a risk factor that increases the likelihood of developing the disease. Only one Italian in ten believes that he is well informed about this disease, more than half know almost nothing about it. The least knowledgeable are people over 54 years old, men, people who have never had experience either in their family or among acquaintances. But even those who encountered the pathology in 37% of cases say that they know little about it. In short, in Italian society there is still little awareness of this cancer, which accounts for 7% of new breast cancer diagnoses but develops in approximately 20% of vessels within 5 years of the initial diagnosis.

Fill in the blanks

Filling this information gap about metastatic breast cancer and the treatment needs of those affected by it is the aim of Donna Europe’s new Once Forever campaign, which will reach a wide range of people from October 13 next year, National Metastatic Breast Cancer Day . audience through all means: television, radio, cinema, press, Internet and posters. The protagonists of the campaign video are four patients who, addressing everyone who can listen to them, in particular institutions, ministries, commissions and regional decision-makers, ask for specific pathways, clinical trials, new treatments, support physical and mental health. well-being, recognition of civil disability. “Hearing is enough to listen, commitment is necessary”, says the campaign promoted by Europa Donna Italia together with ANDOS, aBRCAdabra and Oltre il Nastro Rosa, with the support of AIOM and Senonetwork APS, which received the patronage of the Ministry of Health and promotional progress.

“It is important to raise public awareness of these issues to demonstrate the complexity of treatment and highlight the great strides made in research and the progress made with new treatments. Patients with metastatic disease must be cared for by a multidisciplinary team, that is, breast centers capable of intercepting and meeting their need for global and long-term care,” explains Saverio Cinieri, National President of AIOM (Italian Association of Medical Oncology).

Listening and Research

“It is encouraging that research is increasingly focusing on diseases that were once considered incurable, to ensure patients not only live longer, but also have a better quality of life. These goals make us understand how important it is to listen to them and guarantee them the necessary protection rights,” adds Luigi Cataliotti, President of Senonetwork. “This stage of the disease is very difficult, but it is more than ever a duty of all of us to continue to listen, explore and support patients.”

Voice of patients

“Giving voice to the needs of these women has always been the mission of Europa Donna Italia,” explains Rosanna D’Antona, president of the association, founded in 1994 in Milan on the idea of ​​Umberto Veronesi and on the initiative of the European School of Oncology. . “This year we want to focus on listening to the needs of women with SCI, using powerful images that explain that their rights and needs are still not being heard. We will put the manifesto demands back before decision makers to speed up the process that needs to begin as soon as possible, and we will continue until they are heard.”

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