Breast Cancer

Young Women With Breast Cancer (PYNK) Program

PYNK is the first program of its kind in Canada to address the special clinical, psychological, research and educational needs of younger women with breast cancer.

The goals of PYNK:

  • Support: enable young women to benefit from special services that address the needs of younger women

    How the PYNK clinic works:
      • The PYNK nurse contacts each patient before her first visit.
      • Patients are assessed at their first visit to determine the needs of the individual and their family.
      • The nurse acts as a ‘system navigator', advocates for patients and coordinates follow up care. 
      • Patients receive timely referrals to a variety of specialists such as fertility experts, gynecologists and geneticists.
  • Research: in addition to studies to open breast cancer patients of all ages, PYNK has research specifically targeted to their young population

    Ongoing studies
    • Tumour biology (collaboration with Harvard's Dana Farber Cancer Institute)
    • Effect of chemotherapy on fertility
    • Predictors of recurrence after lumpectomy plus radiation
    • Psychosocial:
      • Online intervention for young couples
      • Group therapy to improve body image and sexuality after treatment
      • Effects of cancer in daughter on mother-daughter relationship

    Planning for future studies
      • Comprehensive database
      • Risk factor and lifestyle questionnaire
      • Serial questionnaires looking at anxiety and coping over time
      • Frozen blood samples
  • Education: outreach to healthcare professionals about the unique needs of younger women diagnosed with breast cancer

PYNK was developed in collaboration with several young breast cancer survivors and by an interdisciplinary clinical and scientific team from the Odette Cancer Centre's Breast Site Group.

PYNK is supported entirely by private donations. Why donate?

Please click the button below to donate:

PYNK Clinic

Why a special program for young women?

Women aged 40 and younger represent less than 10 per cent of all breast cancer patients but are generally more affected by the diagnosis.

Studies show younger women:
  • are more likely to recur and are more likely to be diagnosed with aggressive disease
  • are at greatest risk of psychological and social distress: on an emotional level, they often face diagnosis while coping with intimate early relationships, emerging careers, social isolation, and body image issues
  • may have younger children which presents challenges of how to discuss the diagnosis
  • are more concerned with preserving fertility, or the loss of fertility as they start a family
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Location and contact

Young Women With Breast Cancer (PYNK) Program

Louise Temerty Breast Cancer Centre
2075 Bayview Avenue,
M-wing, 6th floor
Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Phone: 416-480-5000 ext. 81378

Physicians may contact us at: 416-480-4205

Fax: 416-480-6179

» Referral information