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The AIS Cancer Center

at San Joaquin Community Hospital (SJCH) has a team of experts ready to

help each person facing cancer. That includes a unique group of women who personally know the fear

and struggle—three SJCH nurses who are also breast cancer survivors.

These RNs offer compassionate care to patients at The AIS Cancer Center. They may have much

in common, but each of their stories is different. They range in age and ethnicity, showing what we

already know—cancer can happen to anyone.

Karen Coston

is a Marine Corps

veteran, a nurse, a mother of five children

and now a cancer fighter. During a routine

examination, doctors discovered a mass.

After a mammogram, ultrasound and a

biopsy, her fears were confirmed—

she had markers for breast cancer.

Karen has a strong family history

of cancer. Her mother died

from breast cancer at the age

of 42.

Now she wants to share

her story with other

women. “I feel like as

women we do not do

enough to empower,

encourage and help one

another,” she says.

To help women better

understand breast cancer, Karen has

started an educational event called

“The Core of the Cure.” She funds the

free event herself, which is held twice a

year. She invites 200 women to Hodel’s

Country Dining, where they receive edu-

cation on breast cancer and other topics,

along with being treated to fun games

and raffles.

“I had a friend die from cancer,” Karen

says. “I’ve made it my mission to educate

as many women as I can.”

Karen’s advice to women is simple:

“Listen to that little voice inside you if

you think something is wrong with your

health. No one knows your body like you

do. Don’t put off important exams or

tests because you’re busy taking care of

everyone else.”

Nurses who know what it’s like to battle cancer

Y O U + U S : B R E A S T C E N T E R

Have you had your mammogram?

Request your

appointment today at


“I’ve made

it my mission…”

—Karen Coston, RN,

Charge Nurse for

Outpatient Clinic,

The AIS Cancer Center