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The Affect of Breast Cancer on Your Eyes

POSTED ON June 29, 2012

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“I didn’t believe breast cancer was real until my best friend’s mom, a neighbor of mine, was diagnosed,” shared Mollie Tavel, granddaughter of the late David Tavel (who founded Dr. Tavel Family Eye Care more than 70 years ago). According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the U.S. The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 225,000 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2012. As Mollie trains to participate in ...

“I didn’t believe breast cancer was real until my best friend’s mom, a neighbor of mine, was diagnosed,” shared Mollie Tavel, granddaughter of the late David Tavel (who founded Dr. Tavel Family Eye Care more than 70 years ago). According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the U.S. The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 225,000 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2012.

As Mollie trains to participate in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk for a Cure, she became interested in learning more about the current treatment options. The results of her research were astounding. The type of treatments for breast cancer can vary, but there have been numerous reports of treatment side effects directly impacting the eyes and vision. Reported side effects include the development of red, itchy or dry eyes, watery eyes or blurry vision. Similar to the effects of birth control, cancer treatment using hormone therapy can cause eye problems, too, including vision loss. Specifically, breast cancer patients treated with Tamoxifen reported ocular disturbances, including corneal changes, difficulty with color vision perception, retinal vein thrombosis, and retinopathy. An increased rate of cataracts and the need for cataract surgery have also been reported in patients receiving Tamoxifen.

If you’re currently undergoing treatment for breast or other cancers and are experiencing vision problems, it could be a sign of a more serious medical condition. Call your Indiana eye doctor right away if you notice any visual irregularities or a sudden change in your vision.

As part of the fight to end breast cancer, Mollie will walk 60 miles over the course of three days and is currently working to raise money for breast cancer education, testing and other related programs. “Breast cancer indirectly affects all of us,” says Mollie. “Even if you don’t directly know someone who has fought or is fighting this life-changing battle, it is likely your friend or neighbor does.” To learn more about how you can support Mollie visit her fundraising website and read more about her personal connection to the disease.

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