Daily Archives: July 12, 2011

Thoughts For Tuesday

I have been reading a lot lately. Not much of the latest hot fiction, or the classics, but more about cancer. It’s been kind of all consuming (understandably so). I find myself wanting materials I can relate to. Things that will not just educate me, but mentally prepare me for what’s to come. Things that make me feel normal for going through what I have already experienced.

I’ll eventually go over some of this stuff, but today I just want to share something that I’ve read several times in several different sources. Each time, it never ceases to strike a chord deep down inside me.

From the Livestrong website (statistics are American):

Each year, nearly 70,000 young adults between the ages of 15 and 39 are diagnosed with cancer.

In contrast to those younger and older, survival rates for young adults have not increased since 1975, possibly due to factors such as lack of insurance, less participation in clinical trials and delayed diagnoses.

In addition, young survivors often are caught between the worlds of pediatric and adult oncology. They may face a variety of unique long-term effects that will need to be addressed over their lifetimes, such as: reentry into school or the workforce, insurance coverage issues, infertility as a result of treatment, neurocognitive effects or secondary malignancies.

Every single one of those points is something I’ve read further into. The fact that I had to request to be put into the oncology ward and not pediatrics even though I’m 25. The fact that I was barely two months into a new job and not yet privately insured. How many 20-somethings do you know who have steady jobs and full coverage? Then there’s also the fact that many physicians shrug off the symptoms of younger people until cancer is found at Stage iV or more, when they are already very, very sick. And don’t think I don’t worry every day about the final three points.

Anyways, some things to think about this Tuesday morning. The more people thinking about these things the better.