"BE strong" and "be positive" are on the list of things you should not say to a cancer patient.
Helen Moore, McGrath breast care nurse from Gateshead's Breast & Endocrine Centre, said these types of statements could do more harm than good.
"That's easy for you and I to say, because we don't have cancer," Mrs Moore said.
But she said for people with cancer, these statements or references to "the battle" or "journey" can cause it to be harder than it needs to be, "as people with cancer often feel pressured to be strong".
According to Cancer Australia statistics, one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer before the age of 85 - a figure which has prompted a collaboration between local public and private health sectors.
Earlier this year, the Calvary Mater Hospital partnered with the Breast & Endocrine Centre to develop a program that aims to provide informative support to current and former breast cancer patients.
Mrs Moore is one of four health professionals involved in the program - The Hunter Breast Cancer Information Group.
She believes the group helps "normalise" cancer for its sufferers.
In a casual environment, patients and supporters meet weekly for six weeks.
Nurses, an oncologist and a breast care co-ordinator provide information and support in a loosely structured session.
The group also provides a chance for patients to share what they have been through, while learning about survivorship, the social impact of breast cancer and symptom management.
■ The Hunter Breast Cancer Information Group meets at The Place, corner of Frederick and Pearson streets, Charlestown, fortnightly on Thursdays from 10am to noon. For more information on the group, phone 4014 4752.