by Dennis Maione, Cancer Survivor, Advocate
I am no stranger to cancer; in fact you might say I know him pretty well. As a carrier of one of the Lynch Syndrome mutations, I have had two encounters with him, one in 1992 and the other in 2007 (yup, 2017 marks 10 years since the last time I personally encountered cancer). And with every year that passes, I have a diminished desire to know him any better. Sure, when I was in the throes of diagnosis and treatment I wanted to know everything about cancer: why I encountered him, how we were going to get rid of him. And when we found out that my son has the same genetic mutation that I do, we wanted to know how to reduce his chances of having an encounter with cancer.
by Dr. Robin McGee, CKN Patient Advocacy Editor
Georgia Hurst had a life before advocacy. She was a fit, active mother, putting the finishing touches on her Master’s thesis in Post-War II American History at Northwestern when she learned her brother had been diagnosed with colon cancer at 48. Several years before, they lost an older brother to colon cancer at 36. This early-onset pattern prompted healthcare providers to suggest she be tested for Lynch syndrome (Ls), an autosomal dominant genetic condition which strongly predisposes one to endometrial and colorectal cancer, and various other cancers. She tested positive, and her world changed.
Using scientific research as a springboard for discussion, CKN is distilling this research into practical narratives that will improve the quality of life for patients and offer deeper understanding and connection for physicians. Please join this Doctor-Patient conversation about Lynch Syndrome.
by Dr. Paul M. Johnson, Attending Colorectal Surgeon, Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Center, Assistant Professor of Surgery, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS
Dr. Johnson is providing his personal commentary on Dennis Maione’s articles:
Lynch Syndrome, Part 1: Just the Facts
Lynch Syndrome, Part 2: I Have Lynch Syndrome
by Dennis Maione
Read Part One
Read Dr. Johnson’s Personal Commentary
“What’s it like to have a genetic predisposition to cancer?” That question has been asked of me exactly zero times. Instead, the follow-up to my declaration that I’ve had colorectal cancer twice is usually “Are you okay now?” or “Are you afraid you’ll get cancer again?”
by Dennis Maione
I have Lynch syndrome. That’s not something you can see just by looking at me, but I have it all the same. It’s a genetic mutation. I wish I could say it provided me with some measure of X-Men superpowers, like teleportation or the ability to spray a laser beam out of my eyes, but, sadly, none of these assets are included. Instead, I get cancer. If that is a superpower in any realm, I think I’d rather pass, thank-you very much.
by Dennis Maione
Read Part One: Ten Words
“There must be more than three! What about a Top 10 list, you know, like David Letterman? How can there only be three lessons you gleaned from cancer?”
OK, like David Letterman, I too can create a Top 10 list of things that I learned from cancer. I think, however, that many of them will not readily resonate with you unless you’ve been through the same journey as I have. Here are the first seven (cue drum roll):