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    Thyroid Cancer Rates Are Rising For An Infuriating Reason

    The last four decades have witnessed an explosion of thyroid cancer diagnoses in the U.S. People are three times more likely to receive cancer diagnoses now than they were in 1975.

    Why? Is it chemicals in the water supply? A side effect of all those childhood vaccines? Or is it because a TV ad convinced people to ask their doctors to check their neck?

    But there are not more deaths reported due to thyroid cancer. So why is that?


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    Many young adult cancer survivors don’t receive follow-up care
    A new study of adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer survivors showed that many don’t receive follow-up care after treatment ends, even though it is important for long-term health. In particular, survivors in this age group are at higher risk for a range of late effects, including heart problems, infertility, and secondary cancers.

    In this study, the researchers examined the tumor registry at the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center to study anonymous data about patients diagnosed with cancer at the center. They chose to examine data from AYAs with the 5 most common types of cancer for this age group: leukemia/lymphoma, melanoma, germ cell tumors, thyroid cancer, and breast cancer. Then, they further divided the data into 2 groups by their date of diagnosis: 783 people diagnosed between 2005 and 2009 and 852 people diagnosed between 2010 and 2014.

    The analysis of the data showed that the most important element in whether an AYA survivor received follow-up care was the time since the person’s last cancer treatment. In the group diagnosed between 2005 and 2009, 48% had not had a follow-up visit in 2016. In the group diagnosed between 2010 and 2014, 33% had not had a follow-up visit in 2016. Further analysis showed that whether a person had health insurance was not a deciding factor. In the 2010-to-2014 group, more people without health insurance skipped a follow-up visit than those with health insurance (39% vs. 33%), but this was not statistically significant.

    What does this mean? Regular follow-up care can help AYA survivors manage late effects of treatment that may affect the length and quality of their lives.share on twitter This study suggests that the oncology community is doing a better job of getting more AYAs into follow-up care after treatment ends, but more work is still needed.

    “These patients have the potential to live a normal lifespan and we need to educate them to become their own advocates, so they may receive follow-up care on a regular basis. We hope they continue to receive that follow-up at an established cancer center that has the facilities to assess cardiac health and provide rehabilitation if needed. There are now established survivorship programs nationwide that can provide follow-up care for those who have completed treatment.”

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    A breast cancer survivor's view of the definition of "scars" and surviving cancer. I think I agree with her. She says: "Merriam Webster's dictionary defines the word “scar” as: 1) a scar as a mark remaining (as on the skin) after injured tissue has healed, 2) a mark left where something was previously attached, 3) a mark or indentation (as on furniture) resulting from damage or wear or 4) a lasting moral or emotional injury.

    Their definitions are accurate and applicable not only to normal skin wounds, but also to breast cancer. Let's take definition number 1 for example, “a scar as a mark remaining (as on the skin) after injured tissue has healed.” Whether you've had a lumpectomy, mastectomy or bilateral mastectomies, your body will be permanently scarred. Anytime skin is sliced open with a scalpel, no matter how well-trained the surgeon is, a scar will appear after the wound has healed. Skin is the largest organ of the body. It also has remarkable healing abilities. But when the perfect canvas has been opened, the edges never meet properly again. Breast cancer scars are not only lifelong, but they are also life-altering.

    Definition number 2: “a mark left where something was previously attached.” Breasts were meant to be permanently attached to our bodies. If that were not the case, we would not have been born with them. But when cancer destroys healthy cells, it is often necessary to remove one or both breasts, thereby resulting in scarring.

    The third definition Webster offers under the word scar is, “a mark or indentation resulting from damage or wear.” A lumpectomy or partial mastectomy certainly fits this description. When part of the breast is removed, an evident indention where tissue has been removed is often the result of surgery. The disfigurement, however unsightly, can sometimes be corrected by plastic surgery or other procedures, but there will inevitably be some scarring.

    Definition number 4, “a lasting moral or emotional injury,” definitely pertains to breast cancer, especially the latter part of the definition. All men and women who've personally had their lives touched by breast cancer have suffered some degree of emotional scarring.

    Scars tell a story. The mark that remains gives evidence of an injury to the skin. The injury may have been accidental or intentional, but nevertheless, a scar is a constant reminder of what once was.

    Scars can be used as a sort of life map. As we look at our scars, our memories are jogged. Some scars may tell of childhood clumsiness, surgeries or other painful events. The mark left speaks loudly and says, "Yes, I was injured, but now that wound has healed."

    Physical scars are sometimes easier to accept than emotional scars. We know a physical wound will eventually heal. Sometimes that healing isn't pretty, and sometimes it takes a long time, but barring any unforeseen circumstances, the skin will close and a scar will form.

    Emotional scars are vastly different. It may take a very long time for the healing process to begin and sometimes, those scars never fully heal.

    When I see the scars across my chest, I'm reminded of a difficult time in my life. I'm reminded that a mass the size of a large grape tried to kill me. I'm also reminded not only of the physical pain I endured, but also the emotional pain that is still with me. I'll carry the physical and emotional scars of breast cancer with me until the day I die.

    But instead of allowing my scars to demean me, I can't help but choose to look at them as a sign of strength. They are evidence that I have endured through the hard times.

    So, Merriam Webster, I'd like to thank you for giving such a clear and concise definition for the word scar. You've hit the nail on the head and you've helped us understand a little more clearly. If you've been scarred by breast cancer, whether physically, emotionally or both, please know that your scars tell your story. They can tell of the pain, the difficulties, the triumphs or joys.

    You may have small scars or you may have large scars. You may even have scars that are almost invisible to the naked eye, but remember something other than the dictionary definitions above. Remember your scars tell the world you survived and you need to be awfully proud of that."
    This was taken from Cure Magazine, it's a great magazine if you haven't gotten it.

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    Immunotherapy is gaining traction for treatments for several types of cancer.


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    A new test to detect thyroid cancer, this is great!