By Leonard Ansin
In January 2012, my wife and I had left Boston to spend a few months in sunny Florida. We had just passed Orlando when my cell phone rang. It was my primary care physician calling to tell me she was concerned that my PSA was elevated to 6, which showed that I did have a problem with my prostate.
This is where it all started.
Dana-Farber celebrates cancer survivorship in June with Living Proof, an annual series of events that includes workshops and programs as well as a keynote reception on June 20.
The end of treatment is an important milestone for any cancer patient, but it can also be a time of anxiety. In fact, some new cancer survivors say leaving the routine of regular visits with their health care team can be downright scary. That’s why Dana-Farber and other leading cancer centers offer programs to help survivors transition from active treatment to living well beyond cancer. Read more
By Kelley Tuthill
Hair loss can be a jarring side effect of chemotherapy. When I was treated for breast cancer, I was nervous about my appearance and decided to wear a wig. At first it was a strange experience, but wearing a wig helped me face the day — and a TV audience. Here are five tips I learned for selecting a wig and wearing it with confidence. Read more
By Eric Schuller
If you recently learned you have cancer, donating a sample of your cancer tissue to science is probably the last thing on your mind. But it’s a topic that you might discuss with someone on your health care team, because cancer researchers often rely on donated tissue samples to help them better understand what causes cancer and which treatments are most effective. Read more
By Nancy Borstelmann, LICSW, MPH
Having cancer can be isolating. Even if you’re surrounded by friends and loved ones, you may feel that no one understands what you’re going through. That’s why it can be helpful to join a support group attended by people who face a similar diagnosis, or are in your peer group.
Here are some of the benefits support groups can offer. Read more
Editor’s Note: This is the second in our series of stories celebrating Moms this Mother’s Day weekend. Yesterday, Michelle Maloney shared her story. Today, it’s Allison Bellevue’s turn.
By Christine Triantos
In one whirlwind year, Allison Bellevue moved to Boston, started a new job, met her future husband, and discovered she was pregnant. Compared to what followed, that year was a breeze.
When Bellevue, now 31, went for her first fetal ultrasound, doctors noticed a small mass on her right ovary. They told her it was likely a cyst, and they would keep an eye on it over time.
Editor’s Note: This weekend we celebrate Mother’s Day with two inspiring stories of Moms whose cancer diagnoses came while they were pregnant. Today, Michelle Maloney shares her story.
By Naomi Funkhouser
On a cold October evening, Michelle Maloney braced herself against the night chill. As she hugged herself in bed, she felt a lump in her right breast. The next morning, Maloney scheduled an appointment with her primary care physician, who asked if she could be pregnant.
“Anything is possible,” said Maloney. Read more
Millions of men each year have their blood tested for prostate specific antigen, or PSA, a normal protein whose levels may be elevated in men with prostate cancer or other benign diseases of the prostate.
However, experts have disagreed on who should be tested, when and how frequently. Some are concerned about whether the benefits outweigh the risks of overdiagnosis and overtreatment. In fact, a federal advisory task force in 2012 recommended against routine PSA testing for healthy men – though many physicians disagreed.
by Richard Saltus
One of the oldest healing practices in the world, acupuncture is beginning to have a role in alleviating pain and discomfort associated with cancer and its treatments. Acupuncturists use fine needles to penetrate the skin and stimulate – manually or electrically – specific points on the body.
Just as Dana-Farber tailors treatment and support to children and young adults, the Older Adult Leukemia Program ̶ a specialized, clinical service ̶ addresses the other end of the spectrum: adults who are 65 and older, and have blood cancer such as leukemia or other bone marrow disorders. Read more