University of Vermont

The 18th Annual Women's Health and Breast Cancer Conference



Conference Agenda

Please note that the agenda is subject to change.


Session Four (1:15-2:05 PM)


4-1: ChemobrainPNPTSW / Owen Drudge, PhD, Julie Dumas, PhD, Moira Mulligan, MS, CCC-SLP, and Patricia O’Brien, MD / Women frequently comment that their memory declines during and after therapy for breast cancer. A panel of experts, including a cognitive expert, an oncologist, and a breast cancer survivor, discuss the science behind cognitive change and research efforts to increase our understanding of this condition.


4-2: Writing for Healing / Patricia Fontaine, MACP / The natural ability of the body to heal can be enhanced by artistic expression, and writing is a form of art accessible to all of us. Using simple writing techniques, participants will leave with some concrete tools and resources to begin their own writing practice.


4-3: Vermonters Taking Action Against Cancer: An Open Discussion / David Cranmer / Vermonters Taking Action Against Cancer, the state cancer coalition which brings together cancer survivors, advocates, services and programs from across the state around a common mission, hosts this annual forum. Patients, providers and advocates can join together to learn about women’s cancer in Vermont and discuss ways to collaborate with one voice to reduce the burden of cancer. Included in the discussion will be prevention and detection as well as quality of life initiatives. Come join the conversation and learn how you can be involved.


4-4: Phthalates are Everywhere - But Do They Cause Breast Cancer?PNSW / Thomas Ahern, PhD /Phthalate compounds have made their way into an alarming array of consumer products including food containers, children’s toys, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. Phthalates are suspected to disrupt hormonal pathways in our bodies, and have the potential to cause cancer. Dr. Thomas Ahern will discuss the pervasiveness of these compounds in our
daily environment, summarize current evidence for an effect of phthalates on breast cancer, and introduce his ongoing study on the subject, funded by Susan G. Komen for the Cure.


4-5: Where Should You Look on the Internet for Cancer Information?NSW / Alan Lampson, MA, MLS / The modern health care system requires patients to be actively engaged in their health care. Patients need
to be informed consumers in order to participate in decision making. The Internet has a wealth of resources available for patients and their family members who know where to look. In this class participants will be introduced to the best sites on the Internet for cancer information. They will also learn about how to identify reliable sites and learn about Internet resources for alternative therapies.

4-6: Mindfulness Tools: An Introduction to Practices and Scientific EvidenceNSW / Roz Grossman, MA and Yujing Sun, PhD / Research has shown that meditation and other mindfulness practices can benefit cancer recovery. This session will introduce Mindfulness Tools known to ease stress and anxiety and encourage calmness and wellbeing for cancer survivors and caregivers. Recently published scientific studies on mindfulness meditation in the areas of neuroscience, biology and immunology including clinical outcomes and potential mechanisms will be presented and discussed as well as resources for further mindfulness exploration. Both presenters have been trained in teaching the world-renowned Jon Kabat-Zinn, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program offered to cancer patients at the Vermont Cancer Center.

4-7: The Benefits of Weight Loss in CancerPNRTSW / Kim Dittus, MD, PhD / Weight gain is common in breast cancer patients after diagnosis and during treatment. Unfortunately, survivors who are overweight may
be more likely than trimmer survivors to have their cancer recur. This workshop reviews why weight is likely to change during treatment and details activities you can do that have consistently been shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer, improve odds of survival if diagnosed, and help prevent other illnesses.

4.8: Pilates Anywhere: Core Strength and Stability Exercises for Home, Work, and Travel / Janet Franz / Pilates exercises create strong, stable "core" muscles in the abdomen, lower back and derrière. This helps you move easier, avoid back and hip pain, improve your posture, and enjoy a flatter tummy and tighter bottom. In this session you will learn how to do Pilates exercises on your own, anytime, anywhere. Each exercise is executed with coordinated breathing, control, and fluidity to create kinesthetic awareness. Practice these moves with or without equipment at your desk, on the floor, standing up, or sitting in a chair.

4-9: The Role of Nutrition and Supplements in Cancer TreatmentPNPTRTSW / This session will provide helpful hints for the management of common side effects of chemotherapy, including taste changes, nausea, and constipation. Patients and health care providers will find strategies for optimal tolerance of treatment and preservation of quality of life. Additionally, focus will be placed on the maintenance of one’s nutritional status to ensure treatment can be continued uninterrupted and aid in healing.

4-10: PROVIDER TRACK: Talking to Your Patients about the Sun, Skin, and CancerPN / Anita Licata, MD / This session will review skin cancer with a focus on diagnosis and treatment, highlighting current or new information. We will also discuss common questions your patients might ask regarding sun exposure, tanning, vitamin D and sunscreens. This session is specifically geared toward primary care providers and other health care professionals.

4-11: Culinary Demonstration / Leah Pryor / Join Leah Pryor from the University of Vermont Medical Center for a culinary demonstration outside G’s Restaurant. This demo will give you a chance to learn some nutritional recipes and techniques that you can apply to create fast, healthy, and delicious meals anywhere and anytime.

4-12: Look Good…Feel Better / Sponsored by the American Cancer Society, this is a double-length session that will provide makeovers to current cancer patients, giving them more hope and confidence. FOR CURRENT CANCER PATIENTS ONLY. This is a double-length session that runs from 1:15-3:05 PM.

Back to Conference Agenda

Last modified August 28 2015 11:28 AM