UnityPoint Health - John Stoddard Cancer Center


A program for young women ages 18 to 45, who are at high risk for breast or ovarian cancer.

The John Stoddard Cancer Center is proud to offer EmPowered - a new program that aims to support and educate young women, ages 18 to 45, who are at a high risk for breast or ovarian cancer due to personal history, family history or a genetic predisposition. Unlike a typical support group, EmPowered is centered around outreach events that take place in environments that are enjoyable, social and comfortable. These events provide a unique opportunity for women to meet new friends and share share similar concerns, hopes and journeys.

Outreach events take place in the context of a fun activity such as a yoga class, scrap booking session, wine and cheese tasting, knitting, golfing, book club, running or walking. Following the activity we will have an organized and facilitated discussion on a topic that is related to being young and at high risk for developing breast and/or ovarian cancer. Social networking is an important aspect of EmPowered. With every meeting there is time allotted for sharing of personal experiences and information.

The following are some of the topics that will be covered at our outreach events:

  • Breast screening/surgery
  • Body image changes
  • Financial/insurance concerns
  • Gynecologic surgeries
  • Menopause
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Fertility
  • Ovarian cancer screening
  • Sexuality
  • Alterations with gynecologic health
  • Talking with your kids, spouse or significant other
  • Talking with your family
  • Healthy eating
  • Exercise
  • Decreasing mental stress
  • Organizing your life

This is a program for young women ages 18 to 45, who are at high risk for breast or ovarian cancer. What makes a young woman at high risk?

  • Personal history of breast and/or ovarian cancer
  • Close family members (1st and/or 2nd degree relatives) with breast and/or ovarian cancer
  • Known BRCA mutation in family or self
  • Male breast cancer(s) in family
  • Cancer(s) diagnosed before the age of 50

For more information on EmPowered please call 515-241-8704 or e-mail pati.berger@unitypoint.org.