(Hershey) -- The Food and Drug Administration has rescinded its approval for the breast cancer-fighting drug Avastin, saying it did not necessarily help patients live longer while sometimes giving them severe side effects.
I met this particular patient in the summer of 2009. His story was very typical of a lot of patients I saw that day. He was recently diagnosed with cancer of the stomach and esophagus. As is typical of patients with this cancer, his symptoms were very subtle in the beginning of his course. His problems began with some mild abdominal pain that appeared vague in nature. He ignored them for the most part. He was busy, as most patients are, with the day to day activities involved in raising kids and supporting a family. He thought it was just an upset stomach and put it on the back burner.
We received a voice message from a woman in our community named Becky who was responding to a piece written by witf president & CEO, Kathleen Pavelko, titled "The power of pink: What it all means." Becky expressed concern that in the midst of all the pink and awareness being raised for women in October, we're forgetting about the fact that men need to be aware that they too are at risk of developing breast cancer.
Jen and Jeff Baker have been receiving treatment at Hershey Medical Center for their 17 year-old daughter Jessi since she was four months old. She was born with Down syndrome, hydrocephalus and a heart disease. They received some painful news when they took her in for a back problem that just wouldn’t heal. The doctor sent them to the ER where they were told that Jessi had leukemia.
The preparation of this blog presented me an opportunity to reflect on my first decade as a Medical Oncologist as well as my hopes for the next generation of Oncologists. Of course I also pray for a cure for cancer. We have made tremendous progress, but there is much work to be done. So until there is no longer a need for Oncologists, the following are my observations, opinions, and most important, albeit painful lessons I have learned—the things I wish had been shared with me during my training.
(Harrisburg) -- Firefighters across the state are routinely exposed to cancer-causing chemicals while they perform their duties. A law enacted this year is designed to recognize that fact and give firefighters and their families more peace of mind if a first responder is diagnosed with cancer.
Bette Martin has battled breast cancer, and has also battled stage four liver, bone and brain cancer. She has undergone radiation and chemotherapy to treat her cancer, but has also turned to alternative methods of healing such as healing touch therapy and the ancient Japanese practice of Reiki.
(Baltimore) -- Sometimes the fight against cancer cannot be won - no matter how tough the cancer patient is. Plenty of people have called Ron Smith "tough" over the years. Last week, the Baltimore Sun columnist and long-time conservative radio show host at WBAL announced on the air that he was abandoning chemotherapy to treat his stage-four pancreatic cancer.
The definition of philanthropy:
1. The desire to promote the welfare of others, expressed esp. by the generous donation of money to good causes.
2. A philanthropic institution; a charity.
Or, as Jay Bucher, the President of the Lancaster General Health Foundation, says, "philanthropy is goodwill to mankind." He is happy to report that philanthropy is alive and well, despite the economic challenges we face today.
Over the past year, my team and I have heard from an amazing assortment of people telling us how much witf’s Facing Cancer Together community education effort has meant to them.