Connie Lehman, Barbara Goff receive Ladies Home Journal's Health Breakthrough Award for early breast, ovarian-cancer detection work

Dr. Connie Lehman
Dr. Connie Lehman Seattle Cancer Care Alliance

Ladies' Home Journal recently honored Dr. Connie Lehman and Dr. Barbara Goff at the magazine's Health Breakthrough Awards Luncheon, hosted by Editor-in-Chief Diane Salvatore in New York City. The second annual award recognizes medical professionals who have transformed their area of health with results that dramatically benefit women and families. The September issue of LHJ will feature Drs. Lehman, Goff and the seven other award-winning doctors and researchers.

Lehman, director of radiology at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, received the honor for her work as principal investigator of a 22-site American College of Radiology Imaging Network trial. The trial evaluated the ability of magnetic-resource imaging to detect cancer in the healthy breast of women newly diagnosed with breast cancer. Patients diagnosed with breast cancer typically have a five percent to 10 percent chance of developing cancer in the healthy breast within 10 years. Because of its three-dimensional imaging, an MRI scan can find many of these tiny cancers in the opposite breast. Women can then treat both simultaneously, avoiding a second round of surgery and chemo, and even an unnecessary mastectomy.

Dr. Barbara Goff
Dr. Barbara Goff Seattle Cancer Care Alliance

"Without question, breast imaging is one of the most exciting areas in imaging," Lehman said. "It provides so many opportunities to have an impact on women's lives." Goff, a gynecologic oncologist at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, received the honor for conducting two studies that for the first time detailed early warning signs for ovarian cancer. These signs include increased abdominal size or bloating, pelvic or abdominal pain, difficulty eating or feeling full very quickly, and increased urinary urgency or frequency. Goff's research led to a consensus on guidelines from the Gynecologic Cancer Foundation, the American Cancer Society and the Society of Gynecologic Oncologist.

"When ovarian cancer is caught in stage one or two, the cure rate is 70 percent to 90 percent," Goff said. "Unfortunately for the many patients who are diagnosed when their disease has progressed, the cure rate is 10 percent to 20 percent."

The LHJ selection team chose Lehman and Goff from a candidate list of nearly 100 accomplished professionals.

"These medical professionals are among the most dynamic thinkers in the country, and their innovations directly save lives and improve care for millions of American families," Salvatore said.

[Adapted from a Ladies Home Journal news release.]

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