by Gail Hamm, program director
I watched a webinar last week and the presenter talked about the Oz effect, as in The Wizard of Oz. You know the story. The characters traveled to Oz to meet the wizard hoping that he could solve their problems and give them what they needed- a way home, a heart, a brain, and courage. What the characters ultimately discovered is that the wizard was a sham and that he was unable to give them anything more than what they had come to him with.
They had the answers, the abilities, the strength and courage all along. It was inside each of them and they just had to discover that. When a person is diagnosed with cancer, she starts looking for the answers and the courage. Sometimes, out of the void, she is given the answers she needs. She finds superhuman strength to persevere. She endures experiences that a few weeks before would have seemed impossible. A cancer patient often finds within, more than would be thought possible.
When faced with a crisis, we discover our true selves. In addition, we discover our true friends and family. An additional source of strength and support is a Client Advocate from Cancer Services. Donâ€™t hesitate to make that connection when you need it. When we donâ€™t know if we have the strength within us, an understanding and knowledgeable friend can be a wonderful companion on the journey.
The Kroger Co.â€™s Central Division, American Cancer Society of Northeast Indiana (ACS) and Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana (CSNI) announced results of the 32nd annual â€œKroger Scottâ€™s Cancer Day 2010â€ today. The event included 19 Kroger, Scottâ€™s and Owens stores in Northeast Indiana. Kroger is donating 2% of sales on Wednesday, October 6th to the ACS and CSNI, â€œrounded upâ€ to $50,000. Kroger and Scottâ€™s customers were encouraged to contribute their change to the cancer organizations by â€œrounding upâ€ their purchases from Wednesday, October 6th to Saturday, October 16th, bringing an additional $12,056 for the two cancer organizations. In addition, Kroger donated a $46,000 advertising campaign in support of both Cancer Day and the two local cancer organizations.
â€œKroger Scottâ€™s Cancer Day 2010â€ total proceeds were $62,056. Over 32 years, the annual Cancer Day event has raised $4,465,934 for local cancer organizations.
According to Kroger Central Division President Bob Moeder, â€œWe are determined to be a compassionate and supportive corporate citizen in every local community we serve. Kroger customers and associates always have been especially generous in supporting Cancer Day and we are hopeful that will be the case this year. Although proceeds were down in 2010 versus 2009 and 2009 versus 2008, we are very determined to continue working hard and investing Krogerâ€™s resources in this extremely worthy cause. Cancer has too devastating an effect on so many members of the Kroger family to do otherwise. This year we really focused on celebrating our survivors and we will continue to honor through our efforts. To prevail, we must work as a team and Kroger is deeply honored to work with Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana, the American Cancer Society, Parkview Hospital, Lutheran Hospital, Mayor Henry and nearly 200 community volunteers more than two dozen community organizations to raise critical funds for the fight against cancer.â€
Dianne May, President and CEO of Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana stated, â€œLast year more than 3,000 local people with cancer and their families received emotional support and practical resources from Cancer Services because of corporate leaders like Kroger. We are honored to have a long-standing relationship with Kroger that continues to grow and find new ways to make sure that friends and neighbors in our community know that there is an organization ready to help when a family is touched by cancer.â€
Fifty years after the discovery of the first direct genetic link to cancer, scientists are assessing the state of so-called targeted therapy â€” with nearly 30 treatments on the market and a dozen or so more under study.
â€œWeâ€™re still not using the â€˜Câ€™ word, â€˜cure,â€™â€ cautioned personalized medicine director Jeff Boyd of Fox Chase Cancer Center, who helped organized a meeting in Philadelphia today to mark the anniversary and examine the future of targeted therapy.
But, he added, â€œthere is real potential to transform many cancers into chronic diseases.â€
One next challenge is how to expand the number of targets to attack, in part by answering what the new chief of the National Cancer Institute calls the â€œbig questionsâ€ about what makes this disease so intractable.
Questions like: What makes a tumor metastasize, or spread through the body? Metastasis is what kills, yet scientists donâ€™t know why some tumors spread and others donâ€™t, and what programs those tumor cells to invade, say, the liver instead of the bone or the lung â€” factors that undoubtedly could be new treatment targets.
Starting in October, Dr. Harold Varmus, the NCIâ€™s director, will begin quizzing top researchers from around the country about which of oncologyâ€™s underlying mysteries should be part of his â€œBig Questions Initiative,â€ a new focus of government cancer research.
Answering those questions â€œwould get you over a roadblock that keeps us from making better progress,â€ Varmus told a meeting of his scientific advisers earlier this month.
For Dr. Otis Brawley of the American Cancer Society, such a project might finally offer clues to a huge problem facing patients today: How to tell who needs the most aggressive treatment, and who would be OK skipping the big guns.
A domino effect of genetic alterations is required to cause any of the 200 diseases collectively called cancer. Some occur in the person, making them more prone to illness. But tumors also have their own genetic signature â€” four to seven genetic changes that are critical to turning, say, a normal breast or colon or liver cell into a cancerous one, and a pattern of activity that signals how aggressive that malignancy will be. Those unique patterns also offer targets for treatment, drugs that zero in on the particular genetic pathways fueling the personâ€™s cancer â€” and even vaccine-like therapies, a fledgling field that aims to train patientsâ€™ immune systems to recognize and fight their tumors.
It all started with the 1960 publication of what was dubbed the Philadelphia chromosome, a funny-looking chromosome that two scientists â€” one from the University of Pennsylvania, one from Fox Chase â€” spotted only in patients with a specific kind of leukemia. Fast-forward to the 2001 approval of the groundbreaking drug Gleevec, which has turned chronic myeloid leukemia from a fast killer into a disease that many patients today manage with a daily pill. It works by targeting the cancer-causing protein produced by the Philadelphia chromosome.
Gleevec wasnâ€™t the first genetic targeted therapy for cancer â€” the decades of research sparked by that discovery actually paid off for some other cancers first.
Boyd predicts there will be more than 100 targeted therapies available within several more years, and the real quest is for targets that prove as crucial to holding cancer in check as Gleevecâ€™s did.,
Generating particular excitement now are possible new drugs for hard-to-treat breast cancer, compounds called PARP inhibitors that block enzymes needed for cell growth.
Read more about it here: http://www.chooseneindiana.com/news.aspx/2010/9/23/parkview-lagrange-unveils-oncology-clinic
Kent Hormann and Cynthia Cornwell had ambitious goals- to organize a golf outing to raise money and awareness for Prostate Cancer. And they were wildly successful. With the support of corporate sponsors, including Lutheran Health Network, the first annual Blue Ball Open, which was held on Saturday, August 14, successfully raised $8,600 for Cancer Services.
On Wednesday, October 20, Kent Hormann and Joe Dorko, newly named CEO of Lutheran Health Network, presented our CEO, Dianne May, with the proceeds from the event. We’d like to thank Kent, Cynthia, Joe and all those involved in making this event successful.
On Saturday, October 16, 264 people participated in the 7th annual Beat BC 5K race to benefit Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana. Race results are available at online race results. Jerrod Leatherman won the 5K menâ€™s race with a time of 18:42 minutes. Emily Weber won the 5K womenâ€™s race with a time of 20:09 minutes. Brian Guthrie won the menâ€™s 5K walk with a time of 39:13 minutes. For more information, visit http://www.beatbc5k.org/.
by Gail Hamm, program director
Support Groups are great places to share information and support your fellow cancer sojourners. One night, Tom shared with the group that we could choose to be the pigeon or the statue. He wasnâ€™t talking about the merits of flying versus being rock solid. He was talking about our choice to be either the victor or the victim.
There are certainly lots of times during cancer and the treatments when we may feel put upon. But the only way to survive is to fly like a pigeon. To be alive. To make choices. To not become the statue that all the pigeons roost upon.
Which is it for you? Will you be the pigeon or the statue?
Employees, patients and others from the IU Simon Cancer Center, the IU schools of medicine and nursing, and Clarian Health are featured in an exclusive IU Simon Cancer Center Pink Glove Dance. Producers from the Medline Industries Inc., the makers of the pink gloves, visited the IU Simon Cancer Center last spring, capturing the enthusiasm and energy of many who support breast cancer patients in their health care journey.
The original Pink Glove Dance video premiered last November, featuring 200 Portland, OR, hospital workers wearing pink gloves and dancing in support of breast cancer awareness and prevention. This year’s Pink Glove Dance: The Sequel premiered September 17 and included 4,000 healthcare workers and breast cancer survivors nationally. The videos have more than 11 million views on YouTube and are spawning and endless number of pink glove dance videos and breast cancer awareness events across the country.
For more information, visit www.pinkglovedance.com.
For the 3rd year, the Bishop Luers volleyball team has raised money and awareness for Cancer Services during their game against Snider’s volleyball team. And new for this year, all of Luers’ fall sports teams got in on the action. Boys Soccer and Football, Girls Dance and Soccer, the coaches and even fans, donned pink socks, hats and body paint in order to raise awareness for breast cancer.
by Dianne May, president & CEO
It happened again. A woman came in yesterday to learn about Cancer Services. She lost her husband a little over two years ago and she is working to make peace with their cancer journey and what has become the new normal in her life.
As our outreach coordinator, Linda, showed her around the building and explained the help and support that is available, a small tear rolled down her cheek. She said no one told them about Cancer Services when they needed it. She saw the warehouse and remembered the precious time she spent finding and figuring out what kind of equipment she needed to make him comfortable at home. She lamented that she didnâ€™t have someone to talk with; someone to whom she could pour out all the emotions swirling inside her. She asked aloud why no one told them about Cancer Services.
There are lots of explanations. Sometimes the focus is on a search for treatment options and clinical trials. Sometimes, people assume if the family has good medical insurance that will take care of everything. Sometimes it simply gets lost in all the information that patients and caregivers receive.
The next time you learn that someone you know has cancer, make it a point to tell them about Cancer Services. They may already know about the help available, but they might not. Be patient and explain the basics. Make sure that they know youâ€™re not talking about a hospital or treatment center. Let them know that there is something for everyone. Itâ€™s not about moneyâ€”how much you have or donâ€™t have. Cancer Services is here because caring people in our community understand what it means to have cancer and they want to help. Compassion, knowledge and support, itâ€™s what Cancer Services does and you can help by telling people where to find it.