Cancer Between the Lines

Young adults often have their sights set on the future, anticipating college, working at their dream job, or traveling. One place they don’t plan to be is in an infusion chair undergoing cancer treatment.

Karen Fasciano, Psy.D., and Phoebe Souza, LCSW, MPH
Karen Fasciano, Psy.D., and Phoebe Souza, LCSW, MPH

Cancer disrupts everyone, but especially adults age 18-34 who are growing into adulthood and starting careers and families. The Young Adult Program at Dana-Farber works to help combat these unique challenges by providing emotional support from professionals, and by creating a special community. This resource also helps patients interact with their peers for support.

One challenge young adults face is communicating what they are going through to their primary and medical caregivers. To break down these barriers, the Young Adult Program started the “Cancer between the Lines” video series, a collection of candid conversations between young adults and their caregivers. Here, Katherine Helming, a young woman treated for leukemia at Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center, discusses with her medical caregiver, Karen Fasciano, PsyD, clinical psychologist, how it felt to experience weakness during her treatment:

If you are interested in sharing your story with the Young Adult Program, please email Don’t forget to save the date for the 12th annual Young Adult Cancer Conference on March 28, 2015.