by Pat Taylor, CKN Editor
Originally published on The Huffington Post
The email flashes across my screen in bold, black type: “B got married on the weekend. So… how are you doing?”
How am I doing? My initial response is: “Fine. Happy for him. I wish him wellness and joy!” But then, my face cracks and suddenly I can barely breathe.
by Steve Pake, Living with Cancer
After our cancer treatment concludes, every one of us wants so desperately to believe that our bodies are rid of our cancer forever, and that our fight is over. We want to believe that we’ll be able to put what we’ve been through behind us, and that our lives will return to normal, even if it means a new normal. That’s exactly what I believed in July of 2011 after a five-month fight against testicular cancer, but I was in for a rude awakening. My body was free from cancer, but my life wasn’t. There was so much I’d yet to experience, and so many important lessons that I’d learn along the way.
We asked our Current Oncology Section Editors how they would define the term “life after cancer” and how that theme presents itself in their chosen fields. Below is a response from Dr. Fred Saad,Chief of urology, CHUM.
“Life after cancer” for my patients with prostate cancer varies tremendously. Historically, in the case of prostate cancer, it was almost taboo to admit the disease had struck – given all the misconceptions regarding virility and manhood that accompanied the diagnosis.
A lot of work had to be done on several fronts to dispel the myths surrounding this disease. It is rewarding to see that many men are now able to talk about their diagnosis and help others to open up. This evolution has allowed public awareness of the disease to increase tremendously. The search for new information about prostate cancer has triggered an onslaught of information from many sources including the media, the web, books, etc. We have gone from rags to riches in this disease in terms of information.
We asked our Current Oncology contributors how they would define the term “life after cancer” and how that theme presents itself in their chosen fields. Below is a response from Dr. Baukje (Bo) Miedema, Dalhousie University, Fredericton Family Medicine Teaching Unit.
Cancer is seen more and more as a “chronic disease” because of the good survival rate for many types of cancer. Thus there are now a lot of people that face “life after cancer.” For some cancer survivors, life goes on as usual because they experience few problems and are able to put the disease behind them, albeit the fear of recurrence is never far away. For others life after cancer is tethered to the physical cancer treatments or the psychosocial impact of the treatments for a long time.
We asked our Current Oncology Section Editors how they would define the term “life after cancer” and how that theme presents itself in their chosen fields. Below is a response from Dr. Ricardo Moro, President, Principal Executive and Accounting Officer and Director, Biocurex, Inc.
I have been asked to write a short essay on “Life after cancer”. I could not find anything meaningful to say. I am a medical doctor who has dedicated several decades of his life to cancer research. It has been a while since I saw my last cancer patient and yet, their words and the look in their eyes keep prompting me to go to the lab to receive my daily doses of the mandatory humbling posed by the complexity of Nature.
We asked our Current Oncology Section Editors how they would define the term “life after cancer” and how that theme presents itself in their chosen fields. Below is a response from Dr. Thierry Alcindor, Assistant Professor, Departments of Oncology and Medicine, McGill University Faculty of Medicine.
The outcome of several cancers has improved over the past few decades, owing to advances in surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and palliative care. Therefore, taking care of the surviving victim of cancer has now become an integral part of oncology.