My friend Brad Stafford I wasn’t always a medical journalist. And I wasn’t always a cancer patient. Although, as I am lucky enough to age, it seems like a very long time. Yes, I began telling patient medical stories for a living in 1984 and became a leukemia patient in 1996. But my career actually started in Charlotte, NC in 1972 as a young television news reporter. Eventually, the leaders at WBTV News gave me the wonderful chance to not only host and produce human interest features stories but also to travel anywhere I wanted in North Carolina and South...

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Editor's Note: This blog was first published on pharmaphorum.com. As the numbers surviving cancer increase, the onus must be on ensuring that the pathways are in place to treat the whole patient and not just the disease, to ensure they and their families have the support necessary to aid the best transition back to everyday life. As therapies improve, ever greater numbers of people are surviving cancer. These people need support right through from time of diagnosis and post cancer treatment. A total of 14.5 million survivors of cancer were alive in the US on 1st January 2014, with that...

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A Celeste Maia le diagnosticaron una leucemia hace quince años, con sólo cuarenta y tres. Celeste es artista y vive en Madrid aunque es ciudadana del mundo, pues nació en Mozambique y ha pasado temporadas en varios países (Estados Unidos, Brasil, Checoslovaquia, Portugal, Italia...). Ella es lo que  podríamos llamar una "paciente empoderada", ya que desde que le diagnosticaron el cáncer ha tomado las riendas de su enfermedad: se ha informado a fondo y ha decidido sobre su tratamiento -en ocasiones, con decisiones que han diferido de las de sus médicos. Celeste Maia en su estudio de Madrid. Celeste tiene un coraje admirable...

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The power of interactive patient-driven TV. I started as a television reporter at age 22 in 1972 in Charlotte, North Carolina. I was terrified. I won a job at the largest television station in the Carolinas, and they had an audience of 300,000 people. But I overcame the butterflies and went on camera, first on film, then videotape and finally live. The only audience that I saw was usually a middle-aged videographer pointing the camera at me. But I knew there were real people, individuals, who were at home watching, and I learned to speak to them. That was broadcasting....

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Stress affects all of us in one way or another. By definition, stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances. A new year presents new challenges for people on top of everyday stressors. Whatever your life challenges are, there are ways to manage your stress so that it doesn’t become harmful to your health. This is especially important for those of us who have had cancer. Some experts say that is the link between cancer and stress—if stress decreases the body’s ability to fight disease, it loses the ability to...

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Stuart Scott accepting the Jimmy V Award People live and people die every day with cancer. Often people deal with it silently. There are no headlines. No television tributes. And then there are people in the public eye. They develop cancer, too. Some use it for publicity, for wealth, for public  sympathy. Others choose to continue to live their life with zest, as much as they can, to acknowledge they have cancer but not to dwell on it. Such was the style of one of America’s most popular sportscasters, Stuart Scott. You may recall I blogged many months ago about Stuart, that...

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Like any cancer survivor, I worry about what’s next. Am I bruising too much? Is this little “twinge” something serious? Is this just a cold, or could it be pneumonia? My wife thinks I am a hypochondriac, but she acknowledges that it can be understandable. After all, I was first diagnosed 18 years ago. I stuff the fears down, but they are there. And that’s why there’s a trend on Facebook that scares me: patients who are not doing well post some of the most gruesome photos. Do we really need to see? A couple of years ago, I wrote...

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For most cancers, there are no longer “one-size-fits-all” treatment plans. And at the recent American Society of Hematology meeting in San Francisco, we heard not only that this is changing but that it is changing quickly. I almost feel sorry for the growing ranks of “nurse navigators” who will have many long nights studying just to keep up. Monoclonal antibodies for myeloma, new medicines for CLL, some people stopping medicine for CML, many trials in MPNs, breakthroughs in lymphomas and some acute leukemias. Add to that the looming “immuno-oncology” and how experts are saying it could revolutionize cancer care. How do we...

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El doctor Josep M. Ribera es el jefe del Servicio de Hematología Clínica del Instituto Catalán de Oncología (ICO) y un especialista en el tratamiento del cáncer en personas infectadas con el virus del VIH. En esta entrevista nos explica qué tipo de cánceres son más frecuentes en estos pacientes, cómo se pueden prevenir y cómo se enfoca el tratamiento. El doctor Josep Maria Ribera. Foto del Institut Catalán de Oncología. ¿Las personas portadoras del virus VIH tienen más posibilidades de tener algunos tipos de cáncer?   Efectivamente, las personas infectadas por el VIH tienen un riesgo significativamente más alto...

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  Andrew Schorr at ASH 2013 This is a pivotal time for many, many people living with blood-related cancers like chronic leukemias, multiple myeloma, lymphomas and myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs). We have been calling most of these “chronic cancers" lately, because new medicines have been coming out this year with many more in late stages of research. The hope is there is—or will be—a medicine, or combination of medicines, for you and me (I have two of these conditions) that will allow us to live longer with few side effects. If we are lucky, there may be a progression of ever...

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