breast cancer

Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day

video preview image

EUGENE, Ore. — Oct. 15 is Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day, also known as BRA Day.

A Eugene doctor is trying to bring attention to the options available to women coping with breast cancer.

Toni Myers, a registered nurse with Jewell Plastic Surgery in Eugene, talked with us on KEZI 9 News Midday about this new technology.

Thousands Run the Race for the Cure

race for the cureEUGENE, Ore. — It’s the most common cancer among women worldwide, but on Sunday thousands put their foot down to fight breast cancer.

Survivors, supporters, and family members participated in the Susan G. Komen race at Autzen Stadium.

Super heroes can overcome a lot and on Sunday, some of them are taking on a big challenge: breast cancer.

“We just thought that super heroes can conquer anything and why not breast cancer. We’re the breast avengers. We’re here to stop breast cancer and spread awareness,” said Julia Harshberger from Portland, who’s running the race for her sister-in-law who was diagnosed with breast cancer.

The Breast Avengers are just a few of the thousands of people who were at Autzen Stadium to fight the same fight.

“My grandma passed away a few years ago from breast cancer and we wanted to do this for her and in memory of her,” said Amanda Barth from Salem.

The Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure event in Eugene drew runners and walker from all over the state who have been affected by breast cancer. Each person with a different story.

“It’s one of the best feelings to be a part of this because it’s still hard for our family to go through the loss, but it’s definitely reassuring to go through it with other people who are going through the same thing,” said Barth.

“The more you work with people affected by breast cancer, the more you realize it does affect everybody,” said Linda Aronsohn, volunteer manager for the race.

Organizers say the race has been raising money for local services for five years now. This year, they’re hoping to reach $400,000.

“The Eugene race—75 percent of the money stays right here in this local region for programs that help breast cancer survivors and research,” said Aronsohn.

The breast avengers say every little bit makes a difference because sometimes, even super heroes need help.

“It feels really great to know that people care enough to donate even just a couple of dollars,” said Harshberger.

If you’d like to help contribute to that $400,000 goal, click here.

Behind the Scenes: What’s Love Got To Do With V-day



I struggle with holidays simply for the reason that the meaning behind them often times gets lost in marketing. Valentine’s Day is supposed to be about love but anymore it seems to be more about selling flowers, chocolates and Hallmark cards than it is about love. Showing someone you love them is a good thing and if a “day” reminds you to do so I think that’s good. But we wanted to find true love not just sexy love. I’m looking for a love that’s bigger than a date that ends in, you know. Hey, I’m not against “you know” and I certainly look forward to a nice romantic evening with my wife. But in order for love to last it takes much more than card and cute underwear to keep it going.

Whenever I get an idea for a show the stories just follow. I get it in my mind that I need a certain subject and somehow those people find me. For instance: I was looking for a story on a 30- something year old single woman who has never been married and wants to be. I was walking to my office one day, a woman walks up to me and starts talking and come to find out she’s the perfect story and you’ll see her in our “RDTV Love Show” on Sunday February 16th and 23rd.


We also have a nice interview with Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy and her husband David. You’ll find out how they met and what keeps their “fire” burning. I think Mayor Piercy takes a lot of heat for her leadership and while she and I don’t always agree, I think people need to give her a break. This story will let you see a different side of our mayor.

The story I hope you all stick around for involved Laura Mason Caldwell. I felt funny asking a woman who is dying, to be in our “Love Show.” But I’ve watched Laura and her family struggle with her recent terminal cancer diagnosis and the way she is living to die truly defines love.

I hope you joins us on February 16th & 23rd at 4:30 on KEVU. This is not an excuse not to buy that special someone a card or some chocolate or even that pair of underwear you’ll never see again. It’s just a chance to take a deeper look at love.

Oregon’s pink football helmets help raise over $200,000 for cancer research

The pink helmets worn by Oregon football players on Oct. 19 against Washington State netted some lucrative results for cancer research. Oregon auctioned off 25 of those game-worn pink helmets, helping raise over $200,000 for the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.

Several helmets were autographed by well-known Oregon alumni, including Nike co-founder and chairman Phil Knight, former running back and wide receiver Ahmad Rashad and former quarterbacks Dan Fouts and Joey Harrington.

The cancer fund is named after Kay Yow, the head women’s basketball coach at North Carolina State from 1975-2009. Yow died of breast cancer in 2009. More than $2.6 million has been raised by the fund to help pay for research and programs involved with many women’s cancers.

“Cancer has touched so many lives and hopefully, together with Nike and the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, we can help create awareness and help raise money for the fight against women’s cancers,” head coach Mark Helfrich said in a statement. “It is an honor to join coach Yow’s team in a fight that unites us all.”

One person touched by breast cancer is Oregon wide receiver Josh Huff. Huff’s godmother died of breast cancer and his current girlfriend beat it.



Bellage’ Day Spa Salon & Women’s Wellness


IMG_8908When you walk into Bellage’ Day Spa, Salon & Wellness, a sense of serenity over takes you.  You are greeted by soothing music and welcoming staff, promising a warm and relaxing stay. Krysta Albert, owner of Bellage’ has created a place of relaxation and comfort coupled with familiarity in a warm and inviting space.

The meaning behind the name Bellage’  “Now is her time” or the Italian translation is “strong and beautiful woman”.

Krysta Albert of Belllage' Day Spa, Salon & Women's Wellness
Krysta Albert of Belllage’ Day Spa, Salon & Women’s Wellness

Amenities offered at Bellage’ Spa’ 2700 square foot facility are skin care, anti-aging treatments, hand and nail care, an intimate 3 station full service hair salon, waxing services, massage therapy, reiki, reflexology, naturopathic services, chiropractic care and acupuncture, with plans to offer body wraps in the near future. You can even enjoy complimentary appetizers and sip champagne or wine while you relax as your feet soak in their custom Japanese Foot Spa.

“The primary focus of Bellage’ is relationships – it is our goal and desire to hold each client with familiarity of their likes, preferences and needs and to anticipate what those needs may be.”   Albert states.

But Bellage’ is not only a place to be pampered, it also provides free women’s health screenings under the Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP).

IMG_8922The BCCP was created to help low-income, uninsured and medically under-served women, as well as patients that have a high medical deductible, gain access to life saving screenings for early detection of breast and cervical cancers.  As hard as it is to believe, some insurance companies still do not cover preventive medicines or women’s health check’s.  BCCP provides services to women ages 40 to 65.

BCCP has been in around for approximately 20 years and is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Oregon, SW Washington Affiliate and the American Cancer Society.  Each year, approximately 7000 eligible individuals receive screening services, who may not have otherwise been able to afford these screenings.

Christina Whitaker, Physicians Assistant at Bellage’ has helped diagnose 13 women with cancer over the last two years.

“We teach women how to do self breast exams. You don’t need to know what to look for, you only need to know what is normal”.

IMG_8934According to Whitaker, funds are allocated to facilities based on the number of patients that are treated quarterly. There are always available slots and funds for patients to be seen.

“I always tell my patients, seeing you today, ensures another sister will be seen tomorrow” Whitaker states.

Bellage’ and BCCP will help many woman, who without this service may not seek medical treatment or could go undiagnosed because they lack financial ability or insurance coverage.

“Women drive two hours to come and see us for this program, some as far away as Portland, Bend or Coos Bay, as there are fewer clinics offering BCCP, or the wait list is simply too long”  Whitaker points out.

Bellage’ works with Peace Health Labs, Oregon Imaging, physicians offices and hospitals in their screenings. If there is a diagnosis of cancer, treatment is covered 100%, allowing patients to focus on getting well and not medical bills.

IMG_8905After completing BCCP, which include the woman’s check up and mammogram, the woman are referred internally to the the New Leaf Program lead by Carrie Janes, Nutritional Therapy Practitioner of Bellage’, providing cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure checks, along with nutrition and exercise counseling. Bellage’ accepts insurance, which sometimes covers other services at the spa such as therapeutic massage.

Bellage’ Day Spa, Salon & Women’s Wellness is located at 2868 Willamette St. Eugene, OR. Located at the Market of Choice shopping center. Hours of operation are Monday – Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with plans to open on Saturdays.  For more information please call (541) 684-3988.

To find out more information regarding BCCP please call Bellage’ today or visit

Groups call for buffer zones in pesticide use

Aerial spraying of pesticides, or “crop dusting,” is a practice dating back to 1906.

Several public advocacy groups held a rally today against pesticides at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza during the Saturday Market. Pitchfork Rebellion, an anti-pesticide group from the Triangle Lake area organized “Occupy This! Rally for Pesticide Justice and Jobs!” The event called for banning aerial spraying of pesticides near homes and schools, creating a buffer zone to protect people’s health.

The rally began with a performance by local reggae/jam band Sol Seed, followed by a spoken word protest performance calling for a “pure organic Oregon.”

Then “Day,” a resident of the Triangle Lake area, took to the stage. Day is one of several residents of Triangle Lake who has been documented to have the pesticides 2,4-D and atrazine in his urine. 2,4-D, or 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid, is a major ingredient in Agent Orange, one of the chemicals used by the U.S. military as part of its herbicidal warfare program during the Vietnam War. A professional analysis of four public streams near Day’s and other residents’ homes found these pesticides in all of the streams.

Several environmental groups held a rally today against pesticides at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza during the Saturday Market.

Day said,

“We’re just a bunch of hillbillies from Triangle Lake tired of getting hit by pesticides everyday.”

Studies by numerous organizations, from the EPA to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to public universities, have documented the effects of human consumption of pesticides. Pesticides can cause damage to the human nervous system, reproductive system and other organs, developmental and behavioral abnormalities, disruption of hormone function as well as immune dysfunction.

Day introduced Roy Key, a professional forester of over 40 years. Key said he was there to talk about the dangers of pesticide poisoning in Lane County.

“I’ve been in the forest business for 40 years. I’ve managed forests without herbicides or pesticides. You don’t need those substances to manage the forest.”

Key compared pesticide use to his experience in the Vietnam War.

“It’s just like Agent Orange all over again. But here in Lane County.”

Key called on attendees to tell Oregon governor John Kitzhaber to stop the use of pesticides in the state near homes and schools.

Day, a resident of Triangle Lake, has been documented to have the pesticides 2,4-D and atrazine in his urine. A professional analysis of four public streams near Day’s and other residents’ homes found these and other pesticides in all of the streams.

Oregon already has a buffer zone to protect waterways and salmon species. Streamside protection rules for non-federal forest land in Oregon were adopted in 1994. All private, state and local government forest landowners or operators conducting pesticide operations near streams, lakes or wetlands must comply with these rules. In November 2011, a federal judge upheld buffer zones for pesticide use near streams and rivers. Dow Chemical Company, a leader in specialty chemicals based in Michigan, filed a lawsuit seeking to undo the Oregon rules, saying that they were too restrictive. The restrictions ban the ground spraying of three agricultural insecticides within 500 feet of waterways with salmon. They also ban aerial spraying within 1000 feet of said waterways.

While Oregon has a buffer zone for pesticide use near water, it has not adopted a buffer zone near human activity. The Oregon Department of Forestry says,

“Currently, there are no regulations in Oregon requiring a buffer zone for aerial application of herbicides near specific structures or facilities, including schools.”

There are, nonetheless, safety requirements in how pesticides are used, both in residential and forested situations:

“While pesticide use in a residential setting must abide by pesticide label safety requirements, forestry applications must follow those requirements plus additional regulations spelled out in the Oregon Forest Practices Act.”

Pesticide companies, such as Dow Chemical, argue that their products abide by these safety requirements. Concerning 2,4-D, the substance found in Triangle Lake residents, Dow Chemical has said the following:

“2,4-D is available for use in U.S. crop production today because EPA has determined, after evaluating all human health and safety considerations – including the concerns expressed by activists – that current uses (including currently authorized uses on corn) pose ‘a reasonable certainty of no harm.’ This EPA conclusion was reached only after the Agency had considered all relevant data…This regulatory conclusion is supported by mainstream health and safety experts who have thoroughly evaluated the product.”

The application of pesticides has had a long and controversial history. Dr. Patricia Muir, Professor at Oregon State University’s Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, says that, following World War 2,

Ingrid Edstrom, nurse practitioner at Eugene’s Infrared Breast Thermography LLC, spoke of the link between pesticides and breast cancer. “Oregon has the second highest breast cancer rate per capita in the nation,” she added.

“Chemical pesticides have become the most important consciously-applied form of pest management.”

The Oregon Department of Forestry explains this popularity according to pesticides’ cost-effectiveness:

“Many landowners see herbicides as the most cost-effective means of achieving their reforestation goals following logging or fire, or for converting neglected brush land to forests.”

The first important pesticide was DDT (otherwise known as dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane). Muir says,

“DDT was discovered in 1939 by a Swiss chemist Paul Muller. In its early days, it was hailed as a miracle…It was inexpensive and easy to apply. It was so effective at killing pests and thus boosting crop yields and was so inexpensive to make that its use quickly spread over the globe. In 1948, Muller was awarded the Nobel Prize for its discovery.”

As years went by, however, DDT was labeled both directly and indirectly toxic to many organisms. Most disturbingly, as Muir explains, DDT

“showed up in human breast milk at remarkably high concentrations — so high that the milk couldn’t legally be sold through interstate commerce if it were cow’s milk! [DDT] is the most widespread contaminant in human milk around the world.”

While DDT was banned by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1972, other pesticides are commonly used in Oregon. The last year in which Oregon has data compiled for pesticide use is 2008. That year it was reported that 280,001 pounds of pesticides (chlorpyrifos, diazinon and malathion) were used in the state.

A rally attendee protests 2,4-D, one of the pesticides found in streams near Triangle Lake.

The groups that rallied today are hoping to change how those hundreds of thousands of pounds of pesticides are administered. They asked all attendees to fill out postcards to Governor Kitzhaber to ask for expanding pesticide buffer zones to include not just fish, but people.

Christina Hubbard, the Project Director of Forest Web, also spoke at the rally. Forest Web is a grassroots conservation organization based in Cottage Grove. Hubbard said,

“Forest Web stands in solidarity with these groups. I’ve personally been working with Day since 2007. A lot of these pople have had major clinical studies done on their urine and it is documented that they have pesticide poisoning.”

Hubbard says this rally’s message is not particularly radical.

“Really what this is about is creating a reasonable buffer zone for aerial spraying. This is common sense, to protect homes and schools.”

For more information about Oregon’s use of pesticides in agriculture, go to the Oregon Department of Agriculture’s website at For more information about Oregon’s use of them in forestry, go to the Oregon Department of Forestry’s website at Websites for the groups involved in the rally are: Pitchfork Rebellion,; STOP,; Forest Web,

Shades of Pink


Celebrate women’s health this Friday, October 21st, at Shades of Pink: an evening for Women, Wine & Wellness. Shades of Pink will take place at the Eugene Hilton and is free and open to the public. From 4:30 to 8:30, you will be able to explore more than 70 wellness exhibits, taste local wines, and learn the latest on women’s health issues.

This event is brought to you by Pacific Source and is in support of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.