Breast cancer is the second most common form of cancer found among women in the United States. According to Breastcancer.org, one out of every eight women in the U.S. will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. This year, a combined 375,010 cases of invasive and non-invasive breast cancer diagnoses were expected, with about 42,170 expected deaths. With numbers like these, it is undeniable that the need for breast cancer awareness is at an all-time high.
“Breast cancer patients often have many mountains to climb as part of their treatment, such as chemotherapy, radiation, cancer removal surgery, and reconstruction to name a few,” states Dr. Michael Newman, one of Southern California’s top plastic surgeons. The severity of the situation is clearly not lost on Newman, who specializes in the fat transfer technique; a surgical process where fat is transferred from one area of the body to another, and offers “Forever Breast Reconstruction” for female cancer patients.
Inspiration from a Kiss
Newman’s passion for breast cancer research and awareness led him to Rhonda’s Kiss, a nonprofit organization founded by Kyle Stefanski, that helps cancer patients in need with non-medical expenses. Rhonda’s Kiss also gives grants to partner hospitals to establish patient assistance funds, focused specifically on cancer patients in need.
Mr. Warburton Media recently hosted the “Kiss the Stars” event, with all proceeds going towards the organization and its mission. Dr. Newman, who was announced as a new member of Rhonda’s Kiss’ advisory board, gave a heartfelt speech to a crowd of Hollywood notables, including actress Anne Heche (who hosted the event), Dancing With the Stars’ Peta Murgatroyd, Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Keo Motsepe, renowned sports star Vernon Davis and Hollywood beauty guru, Robyn Newmark.
During his speech, Newman movingly shared the bond he develops with his patients: “Patients going through cancer treatments almost become extended family members to me. They end up coming to see me every week or every month and it ends up being a long relationship; I’m meeting their families, we talk about good days and bad days.”
Newman states that watching his patients go through treatment and become survivors has inspired him immensely and made him passionate about caring for women who are going through cancer treatment. “That’s what got me really inspired when I started talking to Kyle,” Newman expresses. “He took this very negative, very traumatic situation and turned it into something positive. Not only positive for him as a way to contribute but something positive for the world.”
Awareness & Education for the Future
Dr. Newman’s kind nature, along with his wealth of knowledge and huge heart, is setting a new standard for plastic surgeons. He’s continuing his journey to not only help where he can with breast cancer and plastic surgery, but finding moments to educate along the way. Newman states, “It’s fantastic. I think ultimately, as people that have been through so much education, we’re educators. We love to spread knowledge as a physician, so educating people on plastic surgery is fantastic, exciting, rewarding, gratifying.” When speaking on moving forward with Rhonda’s Kiss, he enthuses, “I’m so excited to be a part of the future and be a board member—it’s a total honor.” rhondaskiss.org