Cancer Alerts

Coming to the end of the week, the weather outside is bleak.  So I am taking advantage of the autumn mood and going through some recent communications.  below is an interesting link to an important message about the relationship between chemicals and cancer.

I hope this finds you well.

Given the enormous reach of your blog platform, I wanted to share this with you and hopefully your readers as well. Are you already familiar with the connection between chemicals and cancer? Studies are regularly being conducted that demonstrate an environmental linkage to cancer, and that rates have increased alongside the use of synthetic chemicals. The Breast Cancer Fund annual completes a report on the matter: Victories

Do you know that over 80,000 chemicals on the market today that are included in products have never been adequately safety tested? Science has been showing for years that exposure to these chemicals are linked to major illnesses including cancer. And last year the President’s Cancer Panel finally decided that exposure to toxic chemicals is an important and under-recognized risk factor for cancer, and recommended that the government take immediate action to reverse this trend.

The Panel advised Congress to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act, commenting that this law is “the most egregious example of ineffective regulation of chemical contaminants” and noting that weaknesses in the law have constrained the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from being able to properly regulate known and suspected carcinogens.” It has also been found that the increase in childhood cancer parallels the proliferation of toxic chemicals.

So why does this matter? I work with Environmental Defense Fund and over 300 health and environment organizations that are working to get Congress to do just what the President’s Cancer Panel advised, that is to overhaul our flawed policy for chemicals – and make chemical companies ensure their products are safe BEFORE putting them on the market.

I’d love to see if there’s a way for us to share this information with your readers whether it’s by syndicating one of our blog posts on here: What do detergents and fragrances have to do with breast cancer? – Not a Guinea Pig – Environmental Defense Fund, or providing you with information that someone there might be interested in pulling from, or writing something specifically for your website.

Thank you in advance for considering. Look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Rachel Pappas sent me a note about her informational website: 1 Up On Cancer.  It is an excellent resource on a number of different cancers.  I especially appreciated her section on “Freebies and Discounts for Cancer Patients”.  I sent the link to our BMT social worker.

Trish DeFosse, a student at Endicott College in Massachusetts, wrote to me about her new, one entry so far,  blog Cancer.  Her first post is reprinted below.

My Father’s Battle With Cancer

My dad was the kind of person who hated going to the doctor’s office, or any other check-up for that matter, and he was extremely stubborn, so it was nearly impossible to get him to do anything that he did not want to do. My dad took care of himself, but in his own way and on his own time. Little did he know, however, that for the last two years of his life he would spend the majority of his time in one the places that he hated the most- the hospital.
During my freshmen year of high school I remember my father complaining about a tooth ache for months, but when we suggested that he go to the dentist to get it looked at, of course he refused. My sister, Danielle, and I finally got him to go, but we were completely unprepared for what the dentist was about to tell us. The painful tooth ache that my dad had been complaining about was actually oral cancer caused from smoking cigarettes.
My sophomore and junior year of high school consisted of many trips to Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary in Boston, as well as the local hospital in my hometown, called Central Maine Medical Center (CMMC). At Mass. Eye and Ear, my father underwent surgery to remove the cancer from his mouth and to reconstruct his jaw using bone from his leg. He was cancer free for a few months, which is when he visited CMMC for radiation and chemotherapy. Unfortunately, the cancer came back, now in his lungs, and began spreading throughout his entire body. On February 13, 2009, four days after my mother’s birthday and two days after mine, my dad passed away. He fought long and hard for his life, and for that I am so thankful and proud. My dad is, and will forever be my hero.
I cannot even begin to imagine the pain that my dad went through, but I know that he is in a better place right now, watching over me and protecting me to this day. Experiencing my dad’s battle with him, along with the rest of my family, has really opened my eyes and made me realize how precious life really is. Many people do not realize this and take many aspects of life for granted until they are faced with their own death or the death of a loved one. Everyone should life live to the absolute fullest, because life truly is too short to be anything but happy.

This entry has to come under the “Shameless Plugs” category.  It is an email from Andrea, a double cancer survivor, whose post “Fear of Death” was reprinted here on Monday, the 26th.  It is always gratifying to know that our little website can have some impact in this complicated world.

It’s me, Andrea (see above post), I’m back to thank you for everything that you’ve done for me, for taking the time to read my blog, for deciding to feature it on your site, for giving me the oportunity to have a voice.
English is not my first language and writing that blog is difficult, and I’m in pain, I’m fighting my tumours and I’m sick, and it’s not easy. By sharing my experiences my only hope is that I might, one day, be able to help a worried woman, someone, somewhere, even in the smallest way.
I’m so grateful for what you’ve done for me, Dennis, thank you!
In only 2 hours I had over 140 views! This is the gift that your site and your reputation has given me, the joy of sharing, the feeling of being useful and the voice to educate and inform.
Thank you, Dennis :)
Very grateful, forever.
Andrea

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About Dennis Pyritz

Dennis W. Pyritz, RN, BA, BSN, has been a cancer nurse since 1987 and a cancer and bone marrow transplant survivor since 2004. In December 2001 he was diagnosed with t-cell prolymphocytic leukemia (T-PLL), a rare aggressive form of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Dennis was treated with the then new monoclonal antibody, alemtuzumab (Campath) as this disease has a median survival of 7.5 months. He achieved a 26 month remission but relapsed in February 2004. He was retreated with Campath and went into a second remission. In August 2004 he underwent an allogeneic peripheral blood stem cell transplant with his brother, Mark, as donor. Dennis has remained in remission since - a near miracle. Throughout his career as cancer nurse and patient, Dennis has had the opportunity to speal to both lay and professional groups. Dennis has spoken on cancer topics and survival issues across the country as well as in the United Kingdom, Norway, Austria, Portugal, Honduras, Panama, Guatemala, Trinidad, United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Cyrpus, Israel, and India.

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