Posts Tagged ‘chemo’

Nancy Novack, 15 Year Stage IV Ovarian Cancer Survivor, Helps Others Through Nancy’s List Foundation.

Sunday, June 30th, 2019

My guest, Nancy Novack, was diagnosed with stage IV ovarian cancer in 2004. It had metastasized into her liver. She was too happily innocent about the cancer world and said two now-remarkable things: “Thank goodness, it is not appendicitis,” and “What is stage V?”

Nancy says she is oftentimes asked what she did that was so unique, so mysterious that she survived a lethal dose of cancer, the silent killer as ovarian cancer is often called. She says she was extraordinarily fortunate to have an excellent psychologist who worked closely with her to define and refine her personal relationship to her own cancer. She was blessed with a magnificent A-team of friends and family and so many angels that embraced her. She says the opening of my heart to new loves and old brought forth an attitude of blessed gratitude that I had never known before. When I read and re-read the stories written by cancer survivors, I see the universality of the attitude of gratitude in the process of healing.”

Nancy’s mission since her “cancer journey” is all about determining the unmet needs of cancer patients, especially the emotional aspects, and doing her best to find a way to fill them. She is a psychologist and has significant concerns that the medical community does not address the levels of anxiety and stress and existential chaos that come with a cancer diagnosis … all of which get in the way of healing. Her Foundation Nancy’s List supports the emotional well-being of all those who are living with cancer … the patients and those who love and care for them.

Her path started with finding ways to assist cancer patients with a national listing of financial assistance programs available to the cancer community.  She was profoundly troubled that these kindred souls were experiencing so much fear and anxiety about their finances. How would that reality affect the possibility of their recovery? She vowed to make a difference and knew that financial assistance was out there somewhere and she was determined to make it accessible. She received a 501 ©(3) non-profit status in 2006 and launched her first website. Nancy’s List was intended to be simply a list of financial resources and her intention was to educate cancer patients and their loved ones and the healing professionals who serve them about the accessibility of these programs.

At the same time, she created a community call-to-action in the San Francisco Bay Area to reach out and support the courage, bravery, and resilience of our neighbors.  Through the Nancy’s List programs, cancer patients and their loved ones found community, strength, courage, pleasure, and healing relationships. There is healing power when one is connected to the larger community, especially when you are experiencing fear, loneliness, isolation, and uncertainty. It means everything to know your neighbors are looking out for you. And it is a very good thing to meet kindred souls along the path.

I Am With You: Love Letters to Cancer Patients is a powerful book for the newly diagnosed patient, for those who are going through treatment or have entered remission, for loved ones, and for everyone else in the world.  She created the anthology with 42 authors who truly share her vision, passion, and mission. It brings hope and courage to patients when they need inspiration, when they are feeling the loneliness and fear and anger and loss that go hand in hand with a cancer diagnosis, when they need comfort and a warm heart and a hand to hold. The book offers connection to kindred spirits who ‘know’.

Nancy is now developing a comprehensive national directory of integrative healing practitioners who offer their services (and their souls) to deepen the healing process.  The goal is for all cancer patients to have the opportunity to experience healing other than their dreadful visits to the infusion rooms, radiation offices, and more. She wants to educate patients and healing professionals about the enormous benefits of integrative healing services AND the accessibility of these therapies. The process is very simple. They write a blurb, add a jpg and contact info, email Nancy at Nancy@NancysList.org, and she post it on the comprehensive directory.

Enjoy the interview below:

 

Chemo-Brain is part of Cancer Progression and Chemotherapy

Friday, December 1st, 2017

Chemo brain or chemo fog are the memory and thinking problems experienced by cancer survivors are not just the result of chemotherapy but may start as the tumor forms and develops  before chemo was used according to a new study published in the journal Neuroscience.  Researchers found that female mice with a form of breast cancer demonstrat4ed impaired performance on learning and memory tests before chemotherapy drugs were used., They said “Our work isolated that the cancer is responsible for some of the memory and thinking complaints experienced by cancer survivors, and that drug therapy adds to the problem.” “Both factors independently effect brain function in different ways, which can lead to the development of other psychological disturbances, such as anxiety and depression.” Researchers said as many as 65on. taking longer to complete tasks, and difficulty multitasking.

Progression of tumor and later chemotherapy lead researchers to the identification of three different brain changes. 1)The combination of tumor growth and chemotherapy led to shrinkage of . While the tumor is developing, the body’s immune system releases cytokines  to inhibit the cancer development. Researchers found this reaction caused in the brains nervous system impairing its function. 2) Chemotherapy limited the production of new brain cells in the regions responsible for memory function which lead to a loss of memory. 3)  The combination of tumor growth and chemotherapy lead to shrinkage in brain regions that are important for learning and memory.

the study involved female mice, half with cancer and the other half without. Learning and memory tests were administered initially to determine the the impact of the tumor on the brain. After this mice were either given chemo or a saline solution (control). .Tests were again administered plus some additional ones. After testing was completed researchers brain images, tissue, and blood samples were used to analyze changes in brain structure and cytokinase activity mentioned earlier Before treatment mice with tumors performed less well on memory and learning tests than mice without tumors. After chemotherapy the performance of cancerous mice worsened, and the non-cancerous mice also showed sign’s of deterioration     Further research is planned..

 

Twenty Two Year Stage II Hodgkins Lymphoma Survivor, Roslyn Franken

Sunday, September 10th, 2017

Roslyn Franken is a passionate inspirational speaker, author and proud cancer survivor who knows about the power of positivism and emotional resilience in the face of adversity. Her mother survived the concentration camps of Nazi Europe and her father survived the Nagasaki atomic bomb as a prisoner of war in Japan. At age 56, her mother was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer and with an amazing “Keep Going” attitude lived for 21 years when she was only given two years tops to live. Her father suffered a massive heart attack at age 67 and with his “Never give up” attitude lived till age 94 when he was told he would be lucky if he made it to 82. When diagnosed with cancer at only 29, Roslyn turned to her parents’ positive “Keep going” and  “Never Give Up” attitude as inspiration in her fight to beat cancer and become a long-time survivor.
At 39, ten years after surviving cancer, and at her heaviest weight, Roslyn had enough. She decided that as a cancer survivor she could not allow herself to continue gaining weight and potentially putting herself at risk of cancer and other often diet, lifestyle and weight-related diseases. How she lost the weight and changed her life is outlined in her easy-to-read and easy-to-follow self-help book, The A List: 9 Guiding Principles for Healthy Eating and Positive Living. 
In giving presentations about THE A LIST  book, Roslyn mentioned her parents’ life as well as her cancer journey that both inspired her path to weight loss and improved self-care. People were so inspired by these brief mentions that they wanted to hear more.

And so, Roslyn set to task once again and wrote her second book entitled MEANT TO BE: A TRUE STORY OF MIGHT, MIRACLES AND TRIUMPH OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT.  In this book, Roslyn reveals the true story of her parents amazing survival, resilience and triumph as unlikely Holocaust and Atomic bomb survivors who find true love against all odds and overcome life-threatening health issues later in life. She also includes the profound lessons she learned from her parents about survival, resilience and positive mental attitude while fighting to survive cancer at the young age of 29.

A documentary was made about her parents’ story and Roslyn’s book, Meant to Be, is currently being adapted for production as a feature film.

As a professional inspirational speaker, Roslyn  delivers a heartfelt presentation to share highlights from her book, Meant to Be. She speaks for conferences, student events, community events, faith-based / religious events, senior groups, fundraiser / charity events, banquets / galas and other group events.

Roslyn is also co-author of Death Can Wait: Stories from Cancer Survivors, a fundraising book for cancer research and cancer patient programs.

She has been a guest on numerous television and radio shows and featured in newspapers and magazines across North America and abroad.

She has a Masters degree in Human Systems Intervention (the study of how people self-learn and change as individuals and in groups) from Concordia University in Montreal,

Enjoy the Interview Below:

 

Twelve Year Stage 3 Breast Cancer Survivor, Susan Gonzalez.

Sunday, August 13th, 2017

Susan Gonzalez is a nurse, Certified Professional Cancer Coach, certified in plant-based nutrition, and a 12 year stage III lobular breast cancer survivor. She is an advocate for health and wellness with a focus on cancer prevention and the use of holistic healing for cancer survival.  Her popular book, “100 Perks of Having Cancer plus 100 Health Tips for Surviving It”, and her award winning blog, “The Savvy Sister: simple changes for healthy living”, provides valuable tools for those wishing to live a happy and healthy life after cancer.

As a warrior for cancer survivors, she hosts her own website, CancerSurvivorsForLife.com, where survivors can find information on healing the body, mind and spirit to reduce their risk of cancer recurrence.  Susan is also the creator of MOON Organics: a natural skin care company created for those who want to avoid cancer-causing chemicals. You can see all her products at MOON-Organics.com.

Susan lives in Atlanta with her husband and two daughters. I previously interviewed my colleague, Susan,  5 years ago.

Enjoy the Interview below:

 

An International Alternative Cancer Leader, Frank Wiewel, Interviewed.

Sunday, July 2nd, 2017

For nearly 40 years, Frank Wiewel and his wife Denise have led the struggle for medical freedom in America and throughout the world. Frank was a successful Columbia Records recording artist, engineer and producer. In July 1985, he happened to be in Freeport, Bahamas, accompanying his sick father-in-law, when the Bahamian government, at the instigation of the United States National Cancer Institute (NCI) shut down Dr Lawrence Burton’s (IAT) cancer clinic.

The IAT patients organized and asked Frank to become first president of their association. Frank and Denise led them in a march on Washington and drafted the petition for an evaluation of innovative therapies, signed by 43 Congressmen. Frank was the original requestor of this Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) study entitled, Alternative Cancer Therapies and testified at the Congressional Hearings. Frank led site visits to clinics being researched by OTA and the IAT Clinic was reopened.

In 1986, Frank and his wife Denise founded People Against Cancer and organized The International Coalition for the Evaluation of Alternative Cancer Therapies. It was largely through such efforts, including bitter struggles over three years that the OTA report was re-written and made into a useful document for Congress and the public. In conversations with thousands of people with cancer, health activists, as well as over 50 members of Congress; guest appearances on Design for Living, Natural Living, For the People, and other radio programs; prominently featured interviews in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Des Moines Register, Scientific American, Science, East West, etc; and publications in the Journal of the American Medical Association and the International Association of Cancer Victors and Friends (IACVF) Journal, Frank has tirelessly fought for the fair testing of innovative, non toxic cancer therapies.

In 1993, Frank was a founding member of the Office of Alternative Medicine (OAM) in the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In 1994, Frank was chosen to be the Chairman of the Pharmacological and Biological Treatments Committee and chosen to serve a four-year term on the National Advisory Board of the Office of Alternative Medicine. Scientific American wrote, “The Establishment of the Office of Alternative Medicine (OAM) constitutes a victory for Frank Wiewel.”

Through People Against Cancer, Frank has created and administrates the Alternative Therapy Research Program (ATRP), a program to evaluate treatment options for people with cancer and physicians. Frank has also created and organized the International Physicians Network (IPN) to provide innovative treatment options for people with cancer. In 1996, Frank launched the Alternative Therapy Evaluation Program (ATEP) to conduct scientific evaluations, both retrospective and prospective, of innovative treatments for cancer worldwide.

Frank has been called “The most powerful independent voice in the field of cancer.” He is the editor of a critically acclaimed newsletter: Options: New Directions in the War on Cancer.  “The most revolutionary document published in the field of cancer – the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.” Options remains the only independent newsletter in the field published without outside influence or advertisements.

Frank remains People Against Cancer’s founding executive and runs this grassroots organization from his base in Otho, Iowa (pop. 650), where he lives with his wife, Denise and their daughters Megan and Allison. More information is available at: http://www.peopleagainstcancer.org/

Enjoy the interview below:

 

Saturday’s Show with Cancer Survivors Kathleen O’Keefe Karnavos, Margaret Bermel, and Claire Petretti

Sunday, December 23rd, 2012

Guests for the show on Saturday included cancer survivors Kathleen O’Keefe Kanavos (left) , Margaret Bermel (middle), and Claire Petretti (right) .

Kathleen  is an inspirational speaker, phone counselor at R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation and author of Surviving Cancerland: The Psychic Aspects of Healing. More information was presented earlier on this site or can be found at http://www.Survivingcancerland.com

Margaret has co-authored management articles in scholarly journals, was the co-recipient of the Human Resource Management and Orgamizational Behavior Journal’s Distinguished Paper Award in 1985, and is author of The Cancer Odyssey: Discovering Truth and Inspiration on the Way to Wellness. More information was presented earlier on this site or can be found at: http://www.thecancerodyssey.com

Claire Petretti studies for law but decided it was not for her and has spent many years working with Yoga and Cancer Recover, completed a DVD on Yoga for Cancer Recovery and finishing a book based upon her self-written cancer journals. More information was presented earlier on this site and can also be found at: http://www.oceansoulyoga.com