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Buddy Check: Stepping Stone Trial | News

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Buddy Check: Stepping Stone Trial
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Being obese or overweight can increase a woman's chances of a recurrence, especially for African-American women, but why?

Researchers at Georgetown Lombardi's Comprehensive Cancer Center are hoping to find some answers and are recruiting participants for a clinical trial. The focus is helping black women survive breast cancer through a change in lifestyle. 

Dr. Lucile Adams-Campbell, the associate director for Minority Health & Health Disparities Research at Georgetown's Lomabardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, said, "Women that are overweight or obese, they increase the risk of developing breast cancer in the uninfected breast...and moreover, people that have breast cancer and they are overweight or obese, they double the risk of a recurrence with in 5 years."

Previous studies have shown that black women breast cancer patients are more likely to be obese and gain weight during treatment. But little is known about how to help these women achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

Adams-Campbell explained, "We know if you reduce your weight you will improve your health outcomes when it comes to diabetes, heart disease many other issues that come up in the rise in the black community."

So she and Georgetown colleague Dr. Vanessa B. Sheppard, an assistant professor of oncology, have designed a 12 week clinical trial to help improve exercise levels and diet in black women. It's called "Stepping Stones: Survivors Taking On Nutrition & Exercise."

"Women in our intervention group will have the opportunity to participate in group education classes and in those groups sessions they will exercise with other survivors," said Sheppard. "They will also receive cooking classes, recipes information about proper nutrition...the other component that the women in our intervention group will receive will be individualized phone counseling sessions led by a survivor coach."

To be eligible for the trial you must be:

  • African-American or black
  • Not currently participating in an exercise program
  • Over age 21
  • Within 6-months to 5-years post cancer treatment
  • And overweight.

If you're interested in participating in the Stepping STONE clinical trial, call 202-687-0848. 

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