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Treasure Coast doctor says Suzanne Somers' approach to treatment was non-traditional

Dr. Denise Sanderson says it doesn't diminish what actress did to make breast cancer something people aren't afraid to talk about
Suzanne Somers at Merv Griffin's funeral in 2007
Posted at 8:55 PM, Oct 16, 2023

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Fans of Suzanne Somers and doctors in WPTV's viewing area are reflecting on the impact of the famous actress following news of her death Sunday.

Her 77th birthday would've been Monday. The star is well known for her role in "Three's Company" and "Step by Step."

Her publicist said she survived an aggressive form of breast cancer for more than 23 years, according to NBC. Just this past July, Summers shared on Instagram that her breast cancer had returned.

Suzanne Somers, 'Three's Company' actress, dies at 76


Suzanne Somers, 'Three's Company' actress, dies at 76

Scripps News Staff
4:09 PM, Oct 15, 2023

Oncologists, like Dr. Denise Sanderson of HCA Florida St. Lucie Hospital, said Somers' approach to treatment was non-traditional, but that doesn't diminish what she did to make breast cancer something people aren’t afraid to talk about.

"She may have had the same outcome either way, so it was the right outcome for her," Sanderson said. "I think independent of what you might read sometimes about doctors talking about her choices, she really helped women to be able to talk about breast cancer."
October is breast cancer awareness month, and Sanderson stresses the importance of early detection. She said breast cancer is a curable disease and that women need to self-examine and get regular mammograms after 40.