Physician Dr. Dan Dattani holds a photo of Chandra Dattani.
Physician Dr. Dan Dattani holds a photo of Chandra Dattani.

Triple Negative Breast Cancer: Chandra Dattani’s story

Chandra Dattani's smile lit up the room, and her laughter was contagious.

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But when the beloved Saskatoon businesswoman and volunteer was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer more than 15 years ago, even her husband, a family physician, found very little information about therapies or drugs that could heal her.

"There was very scant literature on triple negative, and I was asking them, why?" said Dr. Dan Dattani.

Typically, oncology teams target estrogen and progesterone receptors to stop breast cancer tumours from growing and spreading.

Unfortunately, those targets don't work for the 15 to 20 per cent of breast cancer patients who have triple negative breast cancer, a swift-moving and aggressive form of the disease.

In this episode, as Dr. Dattani and his children recount Chandra’s fight, her experimental treatments, and her desire to make life better for women with triple negative breast cancer.

"She was so dedicated to making sure we'd never gave up on ourselves and was really our biggest cheerleader every step of the way," said Seema Jain, Dattani’s eldest daugher.

In 2010, her family established the Chandra Dattani Memorial Fund. It’s currently endowed with a balance of over 120 thousand dollars, and continues to support critical cancer research on an annual basis.

"Our biggest hope is hopefully women won't have to suffer the way our mom did,” said Dr. Sheev Dattani. “Hopefully there will be better treatments coming down the road."

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