Here’s a quick summary of notable recent health and cancer news:
The Emperor of All Maladies
In anticipation of next week’s airing of Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies, KCTS has produced this segment about the remarkable cancer journey of SCCA’s Dr. Keith Eaton–not as doctor, but as patient. In late 2012, Dr. Eaton was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and, after several unsuccessful rounds of chemotherapy, he traveled to Philadelphia to be the first adult with ALL to receive CAR T-cell therapy. Later, back at SCCA, he underwent a bone marrow transplant and today is cautiously optimistic about his prospects.
Angelina Jolie Pitt: Diary of a Surgery
As you may remember, two years ago Angelina Jolie announced in an op-ed for The New York Times that she carried a mutation in the BRCA1 gene that dramatically increased her risk for developing breast and ovarian cancer. As a result she decided to get a preventive double mastectomy. Yesterday, in the same space, Jolie wrote that she would undergo yet another preventive surgery—this time the removal of her ovaries and fallopian tubes. Yesterday, in an interview on KING 5 News, SCCA’s Dr. Elizabeth Swisher, the medical director of the Breast and Ovarian Cancer Prevention Program at SCCA, spoke about Jolie’s decision and the steps that women should take in evaluating their risk for breast cancer. Watch Dr. Swishers’ interview here.
The New Survivors
Advances in cancer treatment have, for many, turned cancer into a chronic condition, rather than a death sentence. Wendy Paris, writing for Psychology Today, considers what it’s like to live with a terminal disease”
“In their ability to live fully in the present, people in cancer’s limbo may actually have something important to teach those of us who live more or less in denial of mortality, always oriented toward our imagined future.”
A thoughtful article worth reading whether you’ve been touched by cancer or not.
Other Health and Cancer News
In case you missed it earlier this month on HBO, you can now watch the VICE Special Report: Killing Cancer online, or read The New York Times’ review of Killing Cancer here. The Seattle Times looks at how public cord-blood banking is expanding across region, which could be good news for anyone needing a donor for a bone marrow transplant. The Los Angeles Times reports on how exercise “may be a ‘novel adjuvant treatment’ for women with breast cancer.” And Geekwire writes about Argos, a new tool developed at the Hutch that integrates thousands of medical records, databases and tissue inventories at SCCA, Fred Hutch, UW Medicine, and Seattle Children’s to help accelerate cancer research and treatment.