Research for Metastatic Breast Cancer

METAvivor is the only national non-profit that is raising research funds strictly for metastatic breast cancer. Metastatic (or stage 4) breast cancer (MBC) is cancer that has spread from the breast to other distant places in the body, often bones, liver, lungs & brain. MBC is considered incurable, although treatments can often help control the spread and alleviate symptoms of the cancer, as well as prolong life. The average survival time once breast cancer becomes metastatic is 2-3 years, although newer treatments are helping many women to live longer than this.

There are many national organizations raising money for breast cancer. Yet, only an estimated 2% of those funds go for research on MBC. Those of us living with the disease often feel overlooked by those organizations. It feels like they have given up on us. Yet, we have much to live for! MBC can affect women (or men) at any age. Some of us still have young children. We all have friends and families that we want very much to have more time with. We need more treatment options. We hope and pray for a cure that will allow us to live out the full extent of our lives.

METAvivor gives us hope. METAvivor uses 100% of its donations to fund cutting-edge research on MBC, hoping to change this fatal disease to one that is survivable with good quality of life. They are staffed by volunteers, many of whom have the disease, and their operating expenses are covered by grants. Of the 200,000 Americans that will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year, 30% of them will eventually become metastatic. Some are metastatic from the beginning. Since 30% of breast cancer patients become metastatic, doesn't it seem fair that at least 30% of research funding should be spent on metastatic disease? METAvivor is trying to raise awareness of this need.

Find out more about METAvivor here

ABOUT US: Beth & Summar met through a support group at St. Vincent Hospital (Portland OR) for women with metastatic cancer (all types). We are both very motivated to raise awareness & funds for metastatic cancer research. We are happy to support METAvivor because we know that 100% of the funds will go to research that could ultimately help us live longer and have more time with our families.


Beth was originally diagnosed at age 45 in March 2007 with Stage 3C breast cancer. Despite full, aggressive treatment, it came back as Stage 4 (metastatic) almost 5 years later, in early 2012. It had spread to lymph nodes on the opposite side of her original cancer and later to bones & liver. Since then, she has undergone multiple different kinds of treatment, including chemotherapy. A recent scan showed good news: the liver tumors are shrinking! Beth is a single Mom of two boys, Noah (14) & Eli (10). Her major goal is to be with her boys and to be able to take care of them as they grow all the way up. There is nothing more important than this.


Summar was originally diagnosed at the age of 35 in September 2012, with Stage IV invasive ductal carcinoma, breast cancer which had already spread, or metastasized to her axillary (underarm) lymph nodes, and bone, including her spine, hip, collarbone and rib. This diagnosis came about after Summar felt some pain in her left breast, and she found a lump upon self-exam, though she was extremely shocked as she felt she was in the best shape of her life, working full-time, and happily raising a family (3 year old daughter Sapphire, and 5 year old Jayden) with husband Pascal. To date, Summar has undergone an oopherectomy procedure, a modified radical mastectomy with no reconstruction, which entailed 17 lymph nodes being removed, 5.5 weeks of daily radiation, 2 aromatase inhibitor treatments for the first 6 months, and now undergoes monthly hormone blocker injections and bone strengthener injections. Though as of the most recent quarterly scan, Summar had no evidence of active disease which is great, she was disheartened to learn of some new damage which appeared on her lung from the radiation treatment endured last Winter. Summar's goal is that she lives long enough to see her children grow, her husband and parents grow old, and to bring awareness to Metastatic Breast Cancer along the way! Thank you in advance for your support --we need it!
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Beth Elkin 
Portland, OR
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