Monday, September 27, 2010

Where to Get Financial Help with Cancer Treatments!

Even as new cancer treatments offer hope for some, their cost is out of reach for many. Tens of thousands of people seek help from drug companies and charities that provide free medicines or cover copays for people who can't afford it.

Here is a list (from the Associated Press on 9-27) of places to seek help:

Patient Advocate Foundation: 800-532-5274

CancerCare: 866-552-6729

Chronic Disease Fund: 877-968-7233

Healthwell Foundation: 800-675-8416

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society: 877-557-2672

National Organization for Rare Disorders: 800-999-6673

Patient Access Network Foundation: 866-316-7263

Patient Advocate Foundation: 866-512-3861

Patient Services Inc.: 800-366-7741

As more and more people lose their jobs and can not get insurance and as the price of cancer drugs skyrocket, these services will be more in demand. If you need help with the cost of your treatment contact the companies above and see if they can help you. Who knows how long these programs will be available?


What is Breast Cancer?

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and many people might be surprised to learn of breast cancer's prevalence. In the United States alone, breast cancer incidence in women is 1 in 8, or roughly 13 percent. Among women in the U.S., breast cancer rates are higher than those of any cancer except for lung cancer. It is important for both women and men (who can also suffer from breast cancer) to gain a greater understanding of this deadly disease.

What is Breast Cancer?

Breast cancer is an uncontrolled growth of breast cells. Any type of cancer is the result of mutations in genes responsible for regulating the growth of cells and keeping them healthy. In a healthy body, the cells replace themselves in an orderly fashion, as healthy new cells take over as old ones die out. When mutations occur, changed cells gain the ability to keep dividing without control or order, producing more similar cells and forming a tumor.

In the case of breast cancer, cancerous cells gradually invade nearby healthy breast tissue and make their way into the underarm lymph nodes, which are small organs that filter out foreign substances in the body. If the cancer reaches the lymph nodes, it then has a pathway into other parts of the body. Upon diagnosis, a patient will be told what stage of breast cancer they are in, which tells how far the cancer has spread beyond the original tumor.

I will be going into more information on Breast Cancer and heredity tomorrow so please bookmark this blog and come back tomorrow.

Please buy a "Kiss Breast Cancer Goodbye" t-shirt (or one of my other t-shirts)and all monies I receive for the month of October will go to "Steel Magnolias" Breast Cancer support group in Jacksonville, Alabama. They send care packages and offer support to men and women everywhere, not just in Alabama. They helped me after my surgery and have sent care packages all across the U.S. Some of the items included in these care packages are head coverings, scarves, heart pillow, drain holders, a little teddy bear from the lovely ladies that make all these great items and more great gifts including makeup, information packets, and a great Newsletter that you get every month. (Some of the best Jokes I have ever heard. Laughter is the best medicine) The "Steel Magnolias" Support group goes to school and organizations to discuss breast cancer. This group was instrumental in getting law changed in AL to help cover medical cost for women with no insurance or low income to save their lives. There are now new locations of the "Steel Magnolias" opening up in other states to help men and women get through this devastating disease. They have a men's group called the "Men of Steel" to help men support their wives and to help the men deal with this disease also. This disease affects the whole family. Please help as all their monies come from donations.

Thanks, Leigh

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Eat Veggies, Fight Cancer?

A nine-year study shows that smokers who ate a wide variety of fruits and vegetables lowered their risk of developing lung cancer compared with those eating a smaller range of these foods.
The quantity did not seem to matter, leading scientist to speculate that variety, not volume, may increase your exposure to diverse and potentially powerful anticancer compounds, which still have not been identified.
This article by Alice Park, for Time Magazine, September 13th should tell everyone that fruits and vegetables are essential to your health and well being. If it can be found to lower the chances of someone that is a smoker from getting lung cancer, maybe it works with other cancers.
You can have a say in what you put in your body and how it helps your body work. Omega-3s and vitamin D have already been found to help fight breast cancer and you can get these from fruits, vegetables and are easy to add to your diet. Selenium has been found to fight bladder cancer and one of the best sources is Brazil nut.
To your health.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Vitamin-D , How much is OK? Cancer Statistics.

With sunblock and self-tanners, Americans are D-deficient but how many vitamin D pills should we be taking. New guidelines for the optimal dietary dose are expected out this fall and the studies on vitamin D's effects on cancer, heart disease and cognition are ongoing. Here is where the science stands on cancer now.

Vitamin D may prevent cancer by suppressing the cell growth and blood vessel formation that feed tumors. At least that is the idea, based on animal studies and analyses of human cells. But trials in which patients take vitamin D have not shown a consistent lowering of cancer risk.

One four year trial of 1200 postmenopausal women found a 77% lower risk of all cancers among those taking calcium and 1, 000 IU of vitamin D a day than among those taking a placebo. A larger study, however, in which subjects took 400 IU of vitamin D -- in the absence of an official daily recommended intake, that is the "adequate" intake for adults ages 51 to 70-- did not show lower breast-cancer risk.

The data are strongest for colorectal cancer: subjects with higher blood levels of vitamin D were half as likely as those with lower levels to develop the disease.

Always discuss the vitamins you take with your doctor before starting them.

This information is from "TIME" Magazine, August 30, 2010, Health Page by Alice Park

We will discuss vitamin D and heart disease next.

To your Health!


Friday, September 3, 2010

Breast and Ovarian Cancer Research Info Released

In an announcement made September 1st, new research suggest surgery to remove healthy ovaries gives a triple benefit to some women at high risk for cancer.

The women in the study had BRCA gene mutations and were counseled to help them decide between preventive surgery or more screening to watch for signs of cancer.

The study is the largest to date to find advantages for surgery for these high-risk women and showed preventive surgery lowered their threat of Breast cancer and Ovarian cancer and improves their chances of living longer.

This information is from the Anniston Star, September 1, 1910

To your health,