Valley women invited to participate in cancer study

If you are a Cowichan Valley woman with chronic metastatic or stage four breast cancer, you could help with a study into the condition.

According to Sheryl Shermak, a breast cancer advocate and interdisciplinary doctoral student at the University of Victoria with roots in the Valley, there is a significant need for study of this hidden group of people.

"It is a cancer we may even think we know quite a lot about, but there are several types of breast cancer and different ways the illness can progress over time," she said.

The study is seeking the participation of women who were diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer at least two years ago and are not experiencing active health decline.

"In other words, women who are living relatively well with metastatic breast cancer," Shermak said.

Research participation will include two informal interviews, with options for further participation depending on interests and health of potential participants.

The research goal is to increase awareness and insights into the lives of women who experience metastatic breast cancer as an ongoing health condition, an often hidden group of women with breast cancer.

Her general research interest is people’s experiences of living with chronic or ongoing forms of serious illness in smaller communities.

If you think you might be interested in participating in this research, you can learn more by contacting Sheryl at 1-250-886-4691 or