When the Women's Health Initiative was established more than 20 years ago, no one was talking in grandiose terms and few would have anticipated the wide-ranging health benefits (and huge cost savings) that would result in the decades ahead.
Though my mother and grandmother both had breast cancer, I never intended to focus on cancer research when I chose a career in public health. But as luck would have it, my science background would prepare me when I was diagnosed with the disease at 40 -- and shaped my career.
There are so many important reasons to protect normal circadian function, and to make high quality sleep a daily priority. Our increasing understanding of the circadian influence over cancer is yet another very good one.
When I see that photo of Joan, the newer one, I am filled with hope for her. I am filled with a hope that those battling cancer get to live the rest of their lives, happy and healthy, in honor of those who didn't. In honor of my Dad.
You never stop thinking you are a family of five. You never stop answering that you have three kids, or two daughters. It never stops feeling like something is missing, because something always will be.
It is one thing to have cancer, but it is quite another thing to realize you will eventually join a million other cancer fatalities knowing that your society could have done more...but willfully chose not to.
The show had one purpose and that was to raise money and not to address other issues in the cancer continuum. The questions raised in my mind while watching the show were just from me reading between the lines.
Here's the story of a heroic individual bucking the system. But what a system! Pharmaceutical companies spend hundreds of millions of dollars to develop and patent drugs that might prolong cancer patients' lives a few months or years.
A lot of people out there hear the words breast cancer and think that's it. That the breast cancer you have, is the same one I have, and the same one your mom had, and the same one your fish had, etc. But that couldn't be farther from the truth.
Seven years ago, I Iost my mother after she waged a long battle with ovarian cancer. The memory of her struggle fills me with both pride and sadness. Most of all, it makes me want to strike back against the disease that killed her. I want to help bring an end to cancer.