Using Technology to Aid in the Fight Against Breast Cancer

Patricia-Dean-Escoto-Blog-Tour-Banner-808

I am thrilled to welcome back author and breast cancer survivor Patricia Dean-Escoto to talk about her exciting new app for newly diagnosed or recovering breast cancer patients.

I hosted Ms. Escoto a year ago during her book tour for Top Ten Superfoods for Preventing Breast Cancer where she shared her nutrition tips for prevention and treatment. I have long been an advocate in using sound nutrition practices as the first and most important step to wellness and good health. It was wonderful to have a professional express how much focusing on nutrition helped her through her health crisis.

The timing of her app with my increasing interest in the role of technology in changing the way we approach our health was a stroke of good luck. A community that can support and encourage you to better health has been proven to be a positive force in the prevention and treatment of a number of physical and mental health issues. The world of apps and digital devices offers us a unique opportunity to leverage our smartphones to create an online community that can offer life-saving support and resources at the touch of a button.

Ms. Escoto’s foray into this world is incredibly exciting and I’m very appreciative of her willingness to share this amazing development with all of you. Please read on for Ms. Escoto’s story and for more information about My Breast Cancer Advocate, where you can find it, and how to connect with Ms. Escoto. Enjoy!


Using Technology to Aid in the Fight Against Breast Cancer

My Breast Cancer Advocate(1)We all can use someone by our side at difficult times. Especially when it’s something we have never gone through before. That is what I needed eight years ago when I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Cancer was new to me, I had never experienced it, even in terms of a relative, so I didn’t know what to expect or what questions I should ask. I listened as the myriad of doctors I would see spoke to me in language I didn’t understand. Basically, my mind was in a fog trying to grasp the impact of my diagnosis. It was difficult for me to take in all of the information I was receiving.
Fortunately, I had a staunch advocate right there with me the whole time, taking notes, writing down everything the doctor said to me, asking questions, and reassuring me every step of the way.

However, this is so not the case for thousands of women diagnosed with breast cancer each year. Often, they are alone, left to sift through the complicated waters of a dynamically changing environment when their main thought is just ‘how am I going to beat this thing’? Even now, I get calls from so many women, asking me what they should know, what questions they should ask before they go to their doctor.

These individuals inspired me to develop My Breast Cancer Advocate. An interactive app designed to assist newly diagnosed breast cancer patients. I wanted them to have a voice. I wanted them to be armed with as much knowledge as possible before they saw their doctor.

Testing, in cancer, is used for so many things. It’s used to determine stages, grade, and treatment options. It is a integral component of the process. My app explains all of this, along with common procedures and their associated side effects.

The side effects part is critical. I had a lumpectomy as part of my treatment, but I was unaware of the potential side effect of the procedure…lymphedema. Knowing this can help a person determine if they want to pursue a particular course of action. Other key features of the app include a glossary and the ability to set a calendar reminder.

But this is only half of what the app allows women to do. I’ve spent most of my adult life as an educator in one form or another. If there is anything I’ve learned over the years, it’s that adults want to have a say in what’s happening to them. They want to have an active role in their own outcome; they want to be a partner in the process, particularly when it comes to their health.

In a large part, technology has amplified this feeling and it’s driving our need to connect with others. I had that same need and I saw it in others. These are key features I built into the app. Users not only can look up both traditional and holistic providers, but they can see the ratings of hospitals, find out their rights, connect with federal agencies, and get involved with organizations working to protect their health and the environment. But, more importantly, they can connect with each other via a dedicated blog that allows them to share their stories.

The blogging feature provides the user with an area to share information and to get information from other women who are going through the same thing. I see it as a place to unite and empower those diagnosed with breast cancer to ensure their voices are heard and they get the treatment they deserve.

About Patricia Dean-Escoto:

Patricia-Dean-Escoto-HeadshotPatricia Dean-Escoto is a certified nutrition consultant and breast cancer survivor.  Born in Montclair, New Jersey, she earned her master’s degree in Education from Capella University.  She has more than 20 years of experience working in both the field of education and healthcare.  In 2006, after being diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer, Patricia returned to school to study nutrition.  She is a graduate of Bauman College, where she earned her certification as a Nutrition Consultant.   Recently, she hosted a year-long radio show called Pathways to Healing on the Voice America network where she interviewed experts in the field of health and wellness.  She is author of ‘The Top Ten Superfoods for Preventing Breast Cancer‘ and a Certified Cancer Physical Trainer.  Her company, Pathways2healing, works exclusively with cancer patients in the area of nutrition and exercise.  She lectures both locally and nationally on the topic of nutrition and cancer prevention.

My Breast Cancer Advocate: 

My Breast Cancer Advocate® is an interactive tool designed to act as an advocate for newly diagnosed or recovering breast cancer patients. Users can navigate the tool to determine questions to ask their doctors, gain valuable information about tests and procedures, set reminders, locate holistic and allopathic healthcare practitioners, learn about their rights, and find out what organizations are doing about prevention and legislation as it relates to breast cancer. Additionally, users can share their stories with other survivors via a dedicated blog, their Twitter, or Facebook accounts. Finally, the app contains a comprehensive dictionary of commonly used terms.

 

The app contains the following screens:

1. Questions
2. Tests
3. Procedures
4. Remind Me
5. Healthcare Network
6. My Rights
7. Get Involved
8. Share my story
9. Common Terms

Social Links:

Where to Purchase:

About Maribel Marmol

Stay positive. Eat well. Travel consciously. Move yourself. Change the world.
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3 Responses to Using Technology to Aid in the Fight Against Breast Cancer

  1. Hello Maribel,
    On behalf of Patricia and Book Marketing Services, I would like to thank you for hosting Patricia today on Food4ThoughtNYC. She is honored to be here. If anyone has any questions and/or comments they would like to share with Patricia, please leave them in the comment box. Patricia will be by later in the day to respond to everyone.
    For more details on My BREAST CANCER ADVOCATE, please visit Patricia’s website: http://pathways2healing.us/.
    Patricia is having a giveaway which is available for you to enter between April 7th and May 18th. First prize is a $35 Amazon gift card, autographed copy of Patricia’s “The Top Ten Superfoods for Preventing Breast Cancer” and reimbursement on My Breast Cancer Advocate App download. Enter to win one of three prizes by clicking her: http://tinyurl.com/oszr5wm .
    Patricia’s next stop on her tour is on Friday, April 11th. She will be the guest of The Healthy Breast Program http://www.mammalive.net/. Please join her there.
    To your health!
    Della

    Like

  2. Hi Maribel,
    Thanks for hosting me today. I REALLY enjoy your blog and I wish you much success on your journey of discovery. The emerging technologies we are starting to see are going to usher in many benefits in the coming years. This is only the beginning of the revolution.

    Like

    • You’re very welcome! And thank you for the sweet comments about the blog. It’s a constant work in progress but I love being able to host inspiring people such as yourself. :-) I’ve been working closely with a startup the last few months which has really opened my eyes to the world of tech and its implications for health. What you’re doing is incredible and I wish you continued success!

      Like

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