A program of events at Riverview includes updates on treatment options as well as bra-fittings Wednesday evening. (Click to enlarge)


On a calendar full of events dedicated to breast cancer awareness – including last Saturday’s Boozin’ for Boobs Red Bank bar crawl – October stands out. With fundraisers for a cure the most common theme, Riverview Medical Center is taking a different route in spreading both awareness and up-to-date information to women.

On Wednesday, the Red Bank institution will host “Your Body, Your Health, Your Way,” featuring a panel discussion and Q&A with Meridian Cancer Care experts – radiologists, oncologists, genetics counselors, and surgeons – moderated by Dr. Mark Krasna, medical director of Meridian Cancer. Panelists are expected to speak about the latest developments, treatment options, and medical advances in breast health.

“This is my favorite breast event of the year,” said Dr. Debra Camal, Medical Director of Breast Programs for Meridian Health, and one of the participating panelists. “It is a unique way for us to address questions and situations that come up on an average day in the care of a breast cancer patient.

“Because treatment of breast cancer requires a team approach, the expert panel forum allows physicians of each specialty to ask other physicians how they would handle a particular challenge,” she said.

Slated to run from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Joan and Robert Rechnitz Conference and Education Center, the event will also offer attendees direct access to women’s health experts from Meridian siblings Riverview and Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel to learn about nutrition, sample foods and gather recipes that promote breast health.

“I love to be involved in this event, because I think it is very valuable for consumers to hear our thought process,” said Camal. “If patients and their families are going to trust us with their care, they should be able to see us ‘in action.’ I hope people realize that when they are diagnosed with a breast problem, their physician can be their advocate and supporter.”

The night will also offer custom bra fittings by Sweetest Sin Boutique in Red Bank and the chance for guests to create their own pampered mammography experience. Team members from each of the women’s centers at Riverview and Bayshore will offer women a chance to schedule their mammography appointments and bring their girlfriends, mothers, sisters and others with them. While waiting for their screenings, the women will be able to enjoy light refreshments, spa demonstrations, and listen to some music or watch a movie.

“The experience is a way to make what can be a somewhat nervous time a little more comfortable, as well as giving women the opportunity to encourage other women in their lives to join them in this important diagnostic screening,” said Riverview spokesman Tom Paolella.

The event is free, but registration is required via the hospital website or by calling 800-560-9990. Follow Paint the Town Pink on Facebook to see highlights of this year’s campaign and a list of updates for 2013.