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Article about rethinking cancer

January 5, 2010

I’ve brought up to a few doctors the fact that many people I know have cancer at the site of an injury or infection only to be given a pat on the head and a “there there now, you’re overthinking things again, some cancers just can’t be explained.” This article begs to differ:  Old Ideas Spur New Approaches in Cancer Fight.

For me, my breast cancer occurred at the site of a bout of mastitis I had, and the bone tumor is at the site of an old rib injury. I have no doubt the tumor in my lung is at the site where I had bronchitis or some other lung inflammation. The brain tumors? I’ve had migraines for years. Is that a chronic inflammation? Possibly.

Oh. And I was on hormone replacement therapy for five years. See more about that in the article. I took them despite a gut feeling that I should run far far away. Darn it!

21 Comments leave one →
  1. January 5, 2010 11:00 am

    Wow, that is an awesome article! They had me on hormones off and on for about 9 years. I hated those things, especially the progestin. The estrogen actually helped with anxiety attacks for about the first 2-3 years. After that, no real effect. Anyway, no wonder they keep saying I have dense tissue. Stupid hormones.

    The whole issue of a cancer’s environment is fascinating. If we could fast-forward to the Star Trek years, we could just put a stasis field around a tumor, and it couldn’t do anything. And it sounds like if you could prevent the surrounding cells from breaking down and letting the cancer out, they would do the same thing as a stasis field. Intriguing. Ben is interested in a program to become a Medical Technologist. It’s 6 months of school and 6 months of internship. I’ll get him right on that idea when he gets to start doing lab work. 🙂

    • Jill permalink
      January 5, 2010 1:04 pm

      The breast tissue might be dense, but I think the doctors are denser. It’s been one thing after another where doctors have told me something absolutely wrong or poo poo’d something and then changed their minds later. For example, my oncologist is all of a sudden interested in vitamin D3. When I brought that up five years ago, he said “there’s no proof, and don’t take too much or you’ll overdose.” I ignored him about the “no proof” and continued to take it, but I paid attention to the thing about not taking too much. It turns out it’s darned hard to take too much and maybe if I had taken larger doses I could have put off this recurrence for years — or forever. Who knows? Grrrr….

      I’m beginnning to give serious re-consideration to the chemo I’m getting now for this very reason. What on earth is this poison doing to me that they’re going to say “ooops” about in five years — or five months? I have told the doctor that I want off the chemo ASAP and, to that end, we do some rescanning at the end of January and the beginnning of February. He knows I mean business. =:0

      Go Ben! If anyone’s smart enough to tackle this stuff, it’s Ben.

  2. Lisa permalink
    January 5, 2010 1:07 pm

    Fascinating article. I often ponder many environmental variables when looking at all sorts of variables and possible byproducts. My only concern always is, not returning to blame the victim kind of mentality (and I hate the victim word too, so we can also call it – person inflicted with xyz or more PC would be person who has xyz).

    However, knowledge is power. Some we can no longer do much with as it all ready happened and might be the causation, but even if we had known – what could we have done?

    Always good thoughts and prayers for you and yours 🙂

    • Jill permalink
      January 5, 2010 1:16 pm

      Yes, indeed, you’re exactly right. What could we have done? And it does open another “blame the victim” door. But still, if a doctor knows enough to say, “Hey, you’ve had this infection in a vulnerable spot, so keep a close eye and watch for small tumors there,” then that might be a great help.

  3. mom permalink
    January 8, 2010 10:56 am

    Somewhere you were commenting about not knowing if you had head injuries. Do you remember falling on the railroad tracks on a bike trip? Helmet didn’t protect you. I remember taking the stitches out. Was that in a place that could have dated this injury to head spot? Wonder, I will have to look for the scar. Love and prayers daily. We’ll make it, hear!! Mom

    • Jill permalink
      January 8, 2010 11:45 am

      Yes. You’re right. It’s the same side of the head, though “back” a bit. Who knows how a shock reverberates through your brain, though?

      So, now that they’re “injuring” my liver with chemotherapy are they opening me up to having cancer spread to my liver? These are the things I’m wondering about these days. I’ll run this stuff by the naturopath on Wednesday and the oncologist on Thursday. I can more or less predict their answers, but it’s interesting to watch them. The naturopath will be all over agreeing with me, and the oncologist will say “it doesn’t work that way.”

  4. Lisa Welch permalink
    January 8, 2010 2:29 pm

    Woulda, coulda, shoulda. Life is all about second guesses, isn’t it? Maybe you’ve done all the right things and held off your recurrence for several extra years?
    I continue to keep you in my thoughts and hope you’re feeling younger than 90 very soon!

    • Jill permalink
      January 8, 2010 5:49 pm

      That’s a good way to look at it. Thanks, Lisa.

  5. Lisa Welch permalink
    January 11, 2010 1:27 am

    Hey, is that blue blob with the curls and tongue sticking out supposed to look like me? Actually…there is a certain resemblence. I’m not sure I’m happy about that!

    • Jill permalink
      January 11, 2010 3:16 pm

      🙂 I decided to switch to “monsters” for the pictures of people who don’t post their own pictures…. if that makes any sense. I was wondering when someone would say something. My mom’s is pretty funny.

    • Jill permalink
      January 11, 2010 3:21 pm

      Oh, and the monsters are assigned randomly. I don’t htink yours looks like you at all. If people don’t like the monsters I can switch you all back to something more generic.

  6. Sandy Bartell permalink
    January 11, 2010 2:53 pm

    Hi Jill,

    I ran into Christe MeMenomy at a CPR class last Friday and she told me about your recurrence. I wasn’t sure about the best way to get in touch with you, so she e-mailed me the URL to your blog.

    I’ve read every single one of your postings as well as their associated comments. I thought your blog about what NOT to say to a person with cancer was spot-on.

    I just wanted to tell you that I’m thinking of you and praying for you. I would like to visit with you but only if you want to. Just tell me to bug off if you don’t. I don’t know how you’re feeling these days or what your daily regime is and I don’t want to impose on you during what is a very difficult time.

    I’m still working at Boeing and my e-mail is:

    • Jill permalink
      January 11, 2010 3:18 pm

      Hi, Sandy. I emailed you.

  7. January 11, 2010 4:47 pm

    If I knew how to post my own picture, I wouldn’t have to be a monster?

    • Jill permalink
      January 11, 2010 5:08 pm

      Okay. I’ll be nice and change you back to something more normal. Now I just have to remember where I make that change….

  8. January 11, 2010 5:30 pm

    The monster was sorta cute… Tee hee!

    • Jill permalink
      January 11, 2010 5:40 pm

      We can try a different kind of monster….

  9. Deb permalink
    January 12, 2010 7:48 am

    OK, now you’ve got me curious, so I’m sending a comment to see which monster I bring out! Love and prayers, Deb

  10. Deb permalink
    January 12, 2010 7:51 am

    Looks like my monster is on drugs, perfect fit! 🙂

  11. January 12, 2010 9:33 am

    I like mine, too! Purple and teal. Nice! And it looks exactly as stressed out as I’m feeling while working on year end and VOW annual report! ( for anyone not familiar with VOW.)

  12. Susan Dennis permalink
    January 15, 2010 1:38 am

    Hi, Jill!

    Let me tell you how impressed (and daunted) I was by the excellent set-up, class discussions, and materials/assignments for your RGS course. I think I would enjoy teaching such a class, but I could tell I lacked your writing experience, and your expertise in teaching that subject.

    I’m praying that you have many “good days”, and that the treatments are helping.

    I sent Bruce this link — he may have forwarded it to you already. As a writer, you may enjoy it. 🙂

    How’s Daniel? Tell him hello for me!


    Susan Dennis

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