Winter/Spring 2015 Utah Cancer Connections Magazine

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P R E V E N T I O N • S C R E E N I N G • T R E AT M E N T • S U R V I V O R S H I P 2015 VOLUME 5 ISSUE 1

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Appreciating the Little Things What Brain Cancer Taught An 11 Year Old Girl About Life

Cancer Killing SPICES & RECIPE Utah Homeowner RADON ALERT

THE CO$T OF CANCER

Understanding BRAIN TUMORS

3-D Mammography NOW AVAILABLE Shifting From FEAR TO PEACE


Sometimes, f ighting is the answer.

W hen it comes to beating cancer, you need a team of experts by your side. Our skilled caregivers work together with you to develop a strategic

treatment plan. So you’ll have the best chance to fight cancer and win.

HealingForLife.com LDS Hospital  Intermountain Medical Center  Primary Children’s Hospital McKay-Dee Hospital  Utah Valley Regional Medical Center  American Fork Hospital Dixie Regional Medical Center  Valley View Medical Center  Logan Regional Hospital


WELCOME We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses. - Abraham Lincoln

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Cup 1/2 Full or 1/2 Empty? Wrong Question.

Cover Photo: Aspen Gardner, childhood brain cancer survivor and award winning ice skater. Photo Credit: Michelle Gardner

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Home Owner Radon Warning Cancer Fighting Spices with Recipe Blood Pressure Medication & Breast Cancer Brides Against Breast Cancer SLC Event 3-D Mammography Now In Utah Should I Be Concerned About Lumpy Breasts? The Cost Of Cancer How To Ask For A Second Opinion Understaning Brain Tumors Colon Cancer Facts Tips For A Healthy Life (And Weight) After Cancer Comfort For Breast Cancer Survivors Shifting From Fear To Peace Straight Talk With Dov Local Cancer Resources

www.UtahCancerConnections.com PUBLISHER Ginger Johnson ginger@utccmag.com

EDITOR Geri Taylor geri@utccmag.com

ADVERTISING INQUIRIES advertise@utccmag.com or 801.388.1699 Utah Cancer Connections 265 N Main St. #D252 Kaysville, UT 84037

UTCC is delivered state wide to cancer treatment centers, pharmacies and other health-related businesses.

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Anne Kieryn, M.D. Jamie Jensen Cindy Stewart, BSRT Kathy Truman Eleanor Divver, MPH Jeni Jones Nidia McMullen Dov Siporin Magazine Delivery by the Happy Chemo! Mobile

Proudly Sponsored By Nate Wade Subaru 1207 South Main in Salt Lake City Over 40,000 copies delivered to cancer patients across Utah since 2010.

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THANK YOU!!!

I stared into the eyes of my newborn son as pain from the recent mastectomy shot through my chest. My heart was filled with guilt as I reflected on how poorly I was meeting my duties as a mother. I had just delivered my baby after hearing only four months earlier that breast cancer had infected my body. For a 31-year old fitness instructor, breast cancer was the last thing on my health radar - yet there it was. My two older children sat nearby as a well-meaning family member visited. As I attempted to share some of the internal frustrations I was experiencing regarding the recent diagnosis, the mastectomy and my fears of facing chemotherapy, my guest made the statement: “Well Ginger, I guess you’re just going to have to decide if your cup is half full or half empty. “ My mind raced with a million thoughts (not all of them pleasant) as she continued her sermon on how things could be worse and I just needed to lift my chin and muddle through. I sat there listening; nodding in agreement. Unable to say the words that were spinning in my head as I didn’t want to offend. Yet, in all truth, I was offended. I’m confident that I’m not the only one who has heard the half fullhalf empty statement and so for the mere pleasure of being able to fully express myself, now that I’m eight years out from that day, I’d like to say this: It’s not about whether your cup is half full or half empty. It’s about what is in your cup. If your cup is full of sludge - it doesn’t matter the quantity - you’re not going to want to drink it. It’s been my experience that every person is dealing with some kind of personal battle - whether we can visibly see their suffering or not. The cancer experience took several parts of my body leaving multiple scars as proof of the battle wounds. But what no one could see was the gaping, emotional wounds inside me that at that time, were festering, infected and causing deep suffering. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has experienced feeling that way. People who are suffering often wear masks. ‘I’m fine” becomes the Trojan Horse of our existence. It has been my personal experience that emotional wounds tend to fester long after the physical scars have healed. This understanding brings with it a greater compassion for the suffering of others. Instead of telling people to just be positive, look on the bright side, and any other social cliché that essentially comes across as ‘it sucks to be you’, I have learned to hold my tongue until I have a deeper understanding of what is in their cup. Only then can we understand their situation and find out what needs to happen to assist them in dumping it out, sterilizing the cup and filling it with Living Water.

Ginger

Information presented herein is not intended as a substitute for the advice given by your health care provider. We are not liable or responsible for any loss, injury, damage or harm that you may suffer as a result of the information contained in any advertisement or goods or services contained herein. Reader discretion is advised. Receipt of this publication does not imply endorsement of specific companies, products or services of any kind by your physician, cancer treatment center or by the publisher. If medical or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought. We reserve the right to refuse advertising. Reproductions of any information appearing in this publication in whole or in part cannot be made without the express written permission of the publisher. ‘We’ refers to the name of this Magazine and Happy Chemo! LLC. Graphic Credit: www.freepik.com. Copyright 2015 - Happy Chemo! LLC. All rights reserved.


PREVENTION By Eleanor Divver, MPH | State of Utah Radon Project Coordinator

PUT RADON ON YOUR HEALTH RADAR REMOVING RADON

WHAT IS RADON?

Radon is a naturally occurring, radioactive gas resulting from the natural decay of trace amounts of uranium, and is found in rock, water and soil. Radon is an odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas that enters a home through different ways, including cracks and other holes in the foundation. Protecting your indoor environment is an important health issue since the gas gets trapped inside and can build up to dangerous levels.

THE NEGATIVE HEALTH EFFECTS OF RADON GAS

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, radon is the number one cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers, resulting in more than 20,000 deaths a year. Smokers also have a significant increase in developing lung cancer when exposed to this gas. Symptoms of radon poisoning include difficulty breathing, chest pains, and recurring respiratory infections such as pneumonia and bronchitis. Children, the elderly, and those with compromised health are particularly at risk.

INEXPENSIVE AND EASY HOME TEST FOR RADON

Testing is the only way to determine if your family is at risk from radon gas, and whether old or new, all homes should be tested. A charcoal test kit can be purchased online at www.radon.utah.gov for $8. Since radon is dense, the EPA recommends testing the lowest living level of your home for 48 hours. Detailed instructions are included in the test kit. You will then mail back the test kit and receive the results in approximately one week. Winter months are the best time to test since homes have a lower amount of circulation, causing radon to accumulate in higher concentrations.

4 UtahCancerConnections.com

If you discover your home has levels above the EPA Action Level of 4 pCi/L of air it is recommended you find a certified mitigator from www.radon.utah.gov and get three bids. A trained and licensed radon technician will install the mitigation system, depending on their recommendations to expel the gas. The cost for a mitigation system runs approximately $1200 -$1500.

HIGH RADON LEVELS IN UTAH

1 in 3 Utah homes will have radon levels above 4 PCi/L of air. The average level indoors in Utah is 5.2 pCi/L of air. If you want to get more information about your zip code – go to www. radon.utah.gov and click on test results/zip code. Quantities can vary within neighborhoods, even from one house to the next. It’s important to test your home now

TAKE ACTION AND TEST TODAY!! TEST KITS ARE ONLY $8 FOR UTAH RESIDENTS. ORDER ONLINE AT

WWW.RADON.UTAH.GOV. FREE RADON DETECTION

TRAINING

FOR HOMEOWNERS: February 17, 2015, 6:30-7:30 PM Woods Cross High School in Btfl. February 24, 2015, 6:30-7:30 PM Northridge High School in Layton

Eleanor Divver, MPH, is the Radon Project Coordinator for the State of Utah. She also teaches at the University of Utah. She loves her work in Radon because she knows that by educating people about radon - lives are saved from lung cancer.


Food For Thought

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According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, several research studies are underway to test the power of natural and synthetic agents to slow, stop, reverse or prevent the development of cancer. The ability of an agent to do so is called chemoprevention.

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One such study shows significant success using curcumin - the active ingredient found in the spice turmeric. Curcumin is found within the root and rootstock, or rhizome of the plant and is the active ingredient with cancer-fighting properties. Not to be confused with curry, curcumin has drawn special attention for its chemoprevention potential because of its safety, multi-targeted anticancer effects, and easy accessibility.

By appointment only

According to a report by the American Cancer Society, “Animal and laboratory studies have found that curcumin, an antioxidant that is an active ingredient in turmeric, demonstrated some anti-cancer effects in the lab. Several types of cancer cells are inhibited by curcumin in the laboratory, and curcumin slows the growth and spread of some cancers.” Turmeric has been part of traditional Chinese and Indian medicine as early as the seventh century AD and is known for it’s anti-inflammatory abilities. The yellow-orange colored spice has been used to treat a long list of conditions, including diarrhea, fever, bronchitis, colds, parasitic worms, leprosy, and bladder and kidney inflammations. For centuries, herbalists in China, India and Indonesia have applied turmeric salve to bruises, leech bites, festering eye infections, mouth inflammations, skin conditions including wrinkles, and infected wounds. Turmeric can be found in several forms but is most readily available as a ground spice. Studies suggest that a daily dose of Turmeric will provide increased health benefits and may play an important role in chemoprevention. Sources: http://Cancer.org http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

801.388.4944

Yellow Rice with Peas Recipe Prep Time: 5 mins • Cook Time: 30 mins • Serving Sz: 1 cup INGREDIENTS 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/2 cup chopped onion 1 cup long grain rice 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning 1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Turmeric, Ground 2 cups chicken broth 1 cup frozen peas DIRECTIONS Heat oil in large skillet on medium heat. Add onion; cook and stir 3 minutes until softened. Add rice, Italian seasoning and turmeric; cook and stir 2 minutes. Stir in broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 15 minutes. Stir in peas; cover. Cook 5 - 8 minutes or until rice is tender. Nutritional information: (amount per serving) Calories: 252 Sodium: 528mg, Fat: 4g, Carbohydrates: 47g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Protein: 7g, Fiber: 3g Source: http://www.mccormick.com

UtahCancerConnections.com 5


LOCAL NEWS

Common Blood Pressure Medication Does Not Increase Risk Of Breast Cancer, Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute Study Finds Contributed by Jeni Jones, Public Relations | Intermountain Healthcare | LDS Hospital

Women who take a common type of medication to control their blood pressure are not at increased risk of developing breast cancer due to the drug, according to a new study by researchers at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Murray, Utah. Researchers analyzed the records of more than 3,700 women who had no history of breast cancer, and who had long-term use of calcium channel blocker medications to control their blood pressure. Researchers found only a minimal increase in risk in one study and a 50 percent reduced risk in a second, leading them to recommend the continued use of these important medications to help prevent heart attack and stroke. Findings from the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute study were presented at the 2014 American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in Chicago on November 19. Calcium channel blockers are commonly used to help prevent calcium from entering cells of the heart and blood vessel walls, resulting in lower blood pressure. “We found no robust data that calcium channel blocker medications increase a person’s risk of breast cancer,” said Jeffery L. Anderson, MD, a cardiologist and researcher at the Intermountain 6 UtahCancerConnections.com

Medical Center Heart Institute. “Given the important role calcium channel blocker medications play in treating heart conditions, we think it’s premature to discontinue their use. At this point we recommend that patients continue taking these medications to treat their hypertension.” The Intermountain Heart Institute study was in response to a similar study released last year by the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. That study suggested that the odds of getting breast cancer was 2.5 times higher for women who take calcium channel blocker medications. Results of the Intermountain study indicated small to no increased risk. The Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute study carefully examined data collected from more than 3,700 women ages 50 to 70 with no history of breast cancer in two Intermountain Healthcare databases. For each group, researchers compared women who were prescribed calcium channel blocker medications to similar women who weren’t prescribed the medications. In their review of a general population medical records database, researchers found the odds of breast cancer to be 1.6 times higher by using calcium channel blockers, which was significant, but much smaller than reported by the Seattle group. But, in

contrast, in the data collected from patients treated in the Intermountain Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory, a reverse relationship was found — a 50 percent reduction in risk of developing breast cancer for women who took the calcium channel blockers. The contrasting results found in these two independent analyses led researchers at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute to conclude that it is likely not the medication that caused the changes in breast cancer risk but other factors (e.g., selection biases). The study was led by Jeffrey Anderson, MD, and Uyen Lam, MD, from the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute and the Internal Medicine Residency Program at the University of Utah School of Medicine. The Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute study and the Fred Hutchinson study were both analyses of existing patient data and not clinical trials. Both studies recommend further research. Researchers involved in the study include Uyen T. Lam, MD; Stacy Knight, PhD; Tami L. Bair; Viet Li, PAC; J. Brent Muhlestein, MD; and Jeffrey L. Anderson, MD.


Brides Against Breast Cancer Find Your Dream Dress And Give Back

By Jamie Jensen | Contributing Writer

Show up at the Brides Against Breast Cancer’s “Nationwide Tour of Gowns” February 21st in Salt Lake City and not only can you pour over beautiful discounted gowns, but proceeds from your purchase will help breast cancer patients and their families.

Amy Overbay, who will take the lead when the tour hits SLC, has been a show manager with BABC for just over a year. She started working with the group because she has always been an advocate for giving back and trying to find her own way to make the world a better place.

The 150-stop annual gown tour “provides brides-to-be with an opportunity to find their dream gown at incredible savings, while contributing to services that provide education, information and outreach to men, women and children affected by cancer,” the BABC website states.

“So many people have been touched by cancer; it’s exciting to know we are making a difference for families dealing with cancer and a privilege to hear their stories of inspiration and hope. It’s also such a pleasure to work with our amazing brides and in many cases, help brides find gorgeous gowns they otherwise may not be able to afford,” Overbay says.

Brides who attend the show will have the opportunity to browse through dresses of all brands and styles in sizes 4-18. These new designer and gently worn dresses are available in every price range with the average gown priced at 600 dollars. BABC also offers an interest-free layaway plan. BABC was founded nearly 16 years ago by a fashion boutique owner who was diagnosed with breast cancer and was trying to find a unique way to connect brides and the cancer support cause. With the help of the money raised by the “Nationwide Tour of Gowns” they are able to offer free information, programs and services to cancer patients, caregivers and family members, while connecting them with others who are undergoing a similar experience. Amy Paulishak, BABC’s senior vicepresident, has been with the group since 2011 and says her own life experiences definitely play a role at work. “My family has a connection to breast cancer on my maternal side, and I have lost two friends under 40 to breast cancer,” Paulishak shares. “So the cause is deeply personal to me and motivates me to do anything in my power to support these individuals and families in turmoil.”

Throughout their time with BABC, both Paulishak and Overbay have met inspirational people whose stories have touched them. Overbay shares the story of Gretchen from Portland who was full of energy and had a smile that lit up the room. The first dress she tried on, which was coincidently a dress that Overbay had personally brought on the plane with her and was supposed to be at the warehouse in Florida, fit her perfectly! Gretchen didn’t want to take the dress off and when the tears started flowing everyone at the event knew it was the dress for her. They announced Gretchen had chosen a gown and asked her to share a little bit of her story with the crowd. She told them her mom had battled breast cancer, had a double mastectomy, and had been on her way to a full recovery. On her way to have reconstructive surgery she was in a horrible car accident and passed away just weeks before they were planning to start shopping for Gretchen’s wedding gown. Gretchen said she felt finding her gown with the BABC organization was like a tribute to her mother and finding the perfect gown right away was a sign that her mom was watching over her.

Another inspirational bride-to-be was battling breast cancer herself and was looking to buy a beautiful dress for her wedding day as well as give back to the cause. Paulishak had the pleasure of spending the day with this bride, who not long before was diagnosed with stage III breast cancer and had recently had surgery. “It was so inspiring to spend time with this woman and her mother. Most brides-to-be are thinking about how their makeup looks, if their hair is in place, the linen color and more for their special day. This woman, who was under 30 years old, was facing an all-together different reality tied to her special day. Throughout the several hours I spent with her, she was nothing but upbeat and over the moon about trying on different gowns, and which tiara looked best on her wig. It was a ‘Wow’ moment for me,” Paulishak shares. There are many ways to be involved with this event. If you are a bride-tobe you can register to attend the bridal show; vendors booths are available, and volunteers are needed as well. If you have already said “I Do,” please consider donating your gown to Brides Against Breast Cancer as your donation is tax deductible. The VIP event will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and guests will enjoy preshow admission, light bites, beverages and giveaways. Cost is $20. General admission will be from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., cost is $5. The event will be hosted at the Radisson Hotel Salt Lake City Downtown, located at 215 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City.

To get more details about tickets, vendor opportunities or to volunteer please visit www. bridesagainstbreastcancer.org. UtahCancerConnections.com 7


3D Mammography is

Here

Take Comfort in Earlier Detection Davis Hospital and Medical Center is proud to provide 3D mammography. This advanced procedure offers more accuracy and is administered by certified mammography technologists and interpreted by fellowshiptrained breast radiologists. In order to provide our community with excellent breast care, Davis Hospital offers 3D mammograms at no additional cost. Who Should Get a 3D Mammogram? A yearly mammogram is recommended for all women over the age of 40. If this Hologic 3D Mammography is is your first mammogram over 41% more accurate than screening or if you have traditional digital mammograms, any of the following risk which means earlier detection factors, we recommend a 3D mammogram: and fewer false alarms.* • Prior history of breast cancer • High risk of breast cancer • Dense breast tissue

*Data on file with Hologic, Inc.

Schedule Your 3D Mammogram Today CALL 801-807-7120

DavisHospital.com | 2132 N. 1700 W., Suite B100, Layton, UT 84041

Accredited by the American College of Radiology


New Technology Improves Breast Cancer Detection Rates In Utah By Cindy Stewart, BSRT Medical Imaging | Davis Hospital and Medical Center

Breast cancer remains one of the most common types of cancer among women in the U.S. and the second leading cause of cancer-related death in women. However, death rates from breast cancer have declined since the late 1980s, largely due to improvements in diagnostic technology, earlier detection rates, increased education and awareness, and improved treatment options. Routine check-ups and exams should be a part of every woman’s health care. Davis Hospital and Medical Center’s Breast Care Center offers comprehensive breast health services, including: • • • • • • • •

3-D mammograms Digital mammograms Minimally invasive biopsy Breast MRI Breast ultrasound High-risk assessments & counseling Genetic BRCA testing Certified breast cancer navigators

How is 3-D mammography different from conventional mammography? Conventional digital mammography produces only one image of the breast from two angles by overlapping the tissue horizontally and vertically, which makes it more difficult to detect cancers. According to the National Cancer Institute, about 20 percent of breast cancers go undetected through conventional mammography. Additionally, there is a higher risk of delivering a false positive result, meaning women may have to undergo more testing and likely a heightened level of anxiety. The technology behind 3-D mammography, called tomosynthesis, allows radiologists to view the whole breast in greater detail. During 3-D

Death rates from breast cancer have declined since the late 1980s, largely due to improvements in diagnostic technology, earlier detection rates, increased education and awareness, and improved treatment options. mammography, a special imaging machine moves in an arc over the breast. Multiple images are acquired at different angles, creating a three-dimensional view of the breast. Radiologists can then view each layer of tissue—similar to leafing through individual pages of a book. Expanding the amount of tissues a radiologist can examine may result in increased detection rates of smaller, harder to see lesions in the breast and decreased false alarms. Potential benefits of 3-D mammograms: • • • • •

Earlier detection of small breast lesions, especially in dense breast tissue Increased accuracy in determining the size, shape, and location of breast abnormalities Decreased risk of false-positive results Reduced need for additional testing Clearer, more accurate images of breast tissue, especially in dense breasts

Is 3-D mammography the right test for you? Although the medical community has not reached a definitive answer about whether some women should receive 3-D mammography over conventional mammography, many results from 3-D mammography are promising. As with

any new diagnostic technology, longterm studies are currently underway, which may yield valuable feedback about the potential risks and benefits and help physicians refine the qualifications a patient should meet before receiving this type of mammogram. Patients who may benefit from 3-D mammography include: • • • •

Women with dense breast tissue Women who need a baseline mammogram to serve as the basis for comparison in later exams Women with family history of breast cancer Women who have a personal history of breast cancer

For now, it is important to speak with your physician about your options for diagnostic testing. 3-D mammography is not a substitute for conventional mammography, and it is currently performed in combination with conventional mammography on the same imaging machine. If 3-D mammography seems right for you, it is also necessary that you understand the overall process and potential risks associated with this type of testing. For more information about 3-D mammography and to schedule your mammogram, call 801-8077120 or visit DavisHospital.com. UtahCancerConnections.com 9


SCREENING

Should I Be Concerned About Lumpy Breasts? Understanding the facts about non-cancerous breast abnormalities By Anne Kieryn, M.D. | The Breast Care Center at Jordan Valley Medical Center

Finding a lump or an unusual change in your breast during a self-exam or routine checkup is certainly cause for concern.

mind, however, that if your doctor orders a breast lump biopsy, it does not mean you have breast cancer. Benign breast conditions are quite common and nonlife threatening

However, there are several breast conditions that are benign (noncancerous), which can present themselves with similar symptoms to breast cancer. If you or your doctor find a breast lump, it is important to understand that not all lumps are cancerous, and, in fact, many cases turn out to be benign conditions that do not require invasive treatments.

BENIGN BREAST CONDITIONS

KNOWING WHAT FEELS NORMAL FOR YOU The anatomy of the breast involves an intricate network of fatty tissue, connective tissue, and glandular tissue. Within the breast tissue sit lobes, containing smaller lobules, which are glands that produce milk when a woman is nursing. The breast also contains many blood vessels, nerves, and lymph vessels. Lymph vessels move lymph fluid through the breast and into lymph nodes that are located throughout the chest, underarm, and above and below the collarbone. The lymph vessels and nodes are a part of a much larger lymphatic system that helps the body fight infections. Understanding the anatomy of the breasts and functions of the different breast systems can help you identify any unusual changes and notify your doctor if those changes occur. In the case of a breast lump, your doctor may request a biopsy, which is a procedure to remove a small piece of tissue and examine it under a microscope. Biopsies allow physicians to determine if cancer or some other medical conditions are present. Keep in 10 UtahCancerConnections.com

Benign breast conditions generally fall into two main categories—fibrocystic changes and benign breast tumors. Fibrocystic changes Fibrocystic changes in the breast tissue usually occur from normal hormonal fluctuations in a premenopausal woman. These changes often involve the development of fibrosis and/or cysts. Fibrosis is the formation of fibrous (scarlike) tissue within the breast. Symptoms include: • Firm, rubbery, or hard lumps that may fluctuate in size • Tissue thickening • Breast tenderness or pain • Changes that occur in both breasts • Changes that seem to occur with menstrual cycle Cysts are fluid-filled sacs within the breast tissue. Symptoms include: • Smooth, moveable, oval or round breast lump • Breast tenderness and pain in the area with lump • Fluctuation in lump size based on menstrual cycle The treatment for fibrocystic changes in the breast rarely involves surgery. Most physicians will suggest taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication, cutting down on caffeine and salt, and placing heat on painful areas. For some cysts, a physician may recommend fine

needle aspiration to remove fluid inside the cyst. BENIGN BREAST TUMORS Benign breast tumors are noncancerous, solid lumps formed by breast cells that are growing abnormally. Although benign tumors are not life threatening and cannot spread to other parts of the body, it is important for your doctor to track this condition, as some benign tumors can increase your risk of developing breast cancer down the line. Symptoms include: • Solid, moveable breast lump • May cause pain or may be painless • Discharge from the nipple • Changes in breast size and shape In many cases, benign breast tumors do not require surgery. However, it is important to monitor your symptoms and continue to get regular checkups. If you happen to find a lump or notice unusual changes in your breast, schedule a visit with your doctor. The Breast Care Center at Jordan Valley Medical Center Centrally located in a convenient and comfortable environment, the Breast Care Center provides a full range of preventive, diagnostic, and treatment services. The Breast Care Center features a multidisciplinary team of physicians, nurses, technicians, counselors, and educators combined with the latest advancements in medical technology to ensure the highest quality in care. For more information about the Breast Care Center at Jordan Valley Medical Center, call 801-562-3171 or visit jordanvalleymc.com.


DO IT FOR THE ONES YOU LOVE. DO IT FOR YOU.

Just make sure you do it. With early detection, breast cancer is 99% curable.* If you’re over 40, schedule your yearly mammogram today.

Scheduling an appointment is easy and convenient with our two locations for breast services: The Breast Care Center at Jordan Valley Medical Center and the mammography department at Jordan Valley Medical Center West Valley Campus.

Jordan Valley Medical Center’s breast care services assist with and provide: Prevention

• Maintain a healthy weight, enjoy a nutritious and well-balanced diet, exercise regularly, do not smoke and limit alcohol consumption. • Keep a record of your breast self-exams, clinical exams and mammograms.

Detection

• Digital mammography • Minimally invasive biopsy • Breast MRI

• Osteoperosis screening • High-risk assessments and counseling • Genetic testing

CALL FOR AN APPOINTMENT

801-617-1919

Treatment

• Comprehensive cancer treatment, including a cancer treatment navigator and more *Source: Susan G. Komen® for the Cure

JordanValleyMC.com | 3580 W. 9000 S., West Jordan, UT 84088

JordanValleyWest.com | 3460 S. 4155 W., West Valley City, UT 84120


TREATMENT

NATIONAL ASSISTANCE

The Co$t of Cancer

American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Website: www.cancer.net Section for patients on the costs of cancer care. Also offers cancerrelated information on treatment, side effects, coping, and survivorship.

Where to Find Help

Patient Access Network Foundation (PANF) Toll-free: 1-866-316-7263 Website: www.panfoundation.org

By Jamie Jensen | Contributing Writer

Cancer is a very expensive disease. After you are diagnosed and this “new normal” has started to set in, you are now faced with a financial reality that can be very daunting. Luckily there are many organizations that can help you know what questions to ask and help you along the way. First things first! It is best to learn as much as you can about your type of cancer and your cancer treatment before you begin, cancer.org explains. Gathering all the information you can will benefit you when talking to your doctor, help you know what to expect, and plan for future costs. Never leave an appointment with unanswered questions. Take control regarding your cancer costs. If you are overwhelmed make sure you have a family member or friend with you who can take notes and ask questions for you. If there is a concern about costs, it

LOCAL ASSISTANCE American Cancer Society - Patient Navigators 801-483-1500 Website: www.cancer.org Provides free wigs, hats, scarves, college scholarships and free financial resource packets to cancer patients. The Hope Lodge (coming Summer 2015) will also provide free accommodations for those in treatment. 211 Info Bank Dial 211 or 1-888-826-9790 Website: www. utahcares.utah.gov This service offers referrals to emergency food pantries, rental assistance, public health clinics, child care, support groups, and legal aid provided by nonprofit and government agencies. 12 UtahCancerConnections.com

is okay to ask your doctor about each part of your treatment plan so there are no surprises. Questions like, “I’m worried about how much cancer treatment is going to cost me.” “Can we talk about it?” “ Will my health insurance pay for this treatment?” “How much will I have to pay myself?” will help eliminate any misunderstandings down the road. Keep in mind that throughout your cancer journey you will have a variety of billed items that may include doctor’s visits, lab tests, clinic visits for treatment, imaging, radiation treatments, drug costs, hospital stays, surgery or home care. If you need financial assistance, speak with the patient navigator or hospital administration for payment options and other support. The organizations listed here may also be able to help: REACH Utility Assistance Program American Red Cross 1-800-328-9272 Website: www.utahredcross.org REACH provides emergency assistance to people who are having difficulty paying their utility bills. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) Utah Chapter 801-281-6618 The LLS patient financial aid program offers up to $500 per year for costs associated with transportation, drugs and treatment for those suffering from blood-related cancers. Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) 1-877-543-7669 Website: www.utahchip.org State health insurance plan for children. See website for more details

Helps underinsured patients with certain cancer diagnoses cover outof-pocket costs. Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF) Toll-free number: 1- 888-879-4210 Website: www.patientadvocate.org Serves as an active liaison between the patient and their insurer to resolve insurance problems; also provides direct financial support to insured patients who are financially and medically qualified for drug treatments and/or prescription copays, co-insurance, and deductibles related to certain cancer diagnoses. National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) Toll-free number: 1- 800-388-2227 Website: www.nfcc.org This network of over 900 member agency locations is designed to assist people dealing with stressful financial situations by providing money management education; confidential budget, credit, and debt counseling; and debt repayment plans. Sense of Security www.senseofsecurity.org Funds the following expenses while receiving breast cancer treatment: Mortgage or rent, Medical insurance premiums, Transportation costs, Child care, Utilities, Groceries Cancer Care Inc www.cancercare.org Cancer Care is a national non-profit organization that provides free, professional assistance to people with any type of cancer and to their families. They offer education, one on one counseling, financial aid for non-medical expenses and referrals to community services. Cancer Fund of America www.cfoa.org CFA is dedicated to providing direct aid to financially indigent patients in the form of goods such as canned foods, medical supplies, and other staples.


WILL MY DOCTOR BE UPSET IF I GET A SECOND OPINION? A good doctor understands your right to be well informed and should support a second opinion. Don’t worry about hurting your doctor’s feelings. Most doctors welcome a second opinion, especially when surgery or long-term treatment is involved.

How To Get A Second Opinion Making decisions about healthcare is one of the most important in a person’s life. When people are told they have cancer or another life threatening illness they often feel that they must make an immediate decision and begin treatment as soon as possible. While this may be true in some instances, taking the time to learn about your disease, getting a second opinion, or perhaps even a third opinion, and weighing your options is a very reasonable approach. Making proactive decisions regarding your health, after you have been thoroughly informed about your diagnosis, prognosis and available treatment options, will give you a greater degree of control over your treatment. The information (right) provided by the Patient Advocacy Foundation (www.patientadvocate.org) and WomensHealth.gov answers many concerns about requesting a second opinion.

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DOCTOR’S OPINIONS MAY DIFFER A different doctor may come up with a different diagnosis, or at least offer a different opinion as to treatment choices. Not every doctor will have the same opinion with regard to diseases and possible treatments. Factors which may have an effect on a doctor’s opinion are technology available to that doctor, school of thought, where they were trained, individual methods of treatment and experience in dealing with that particular diagnosis. TREATMENT METHODS MAY DIFFER Some doctors prefer to monitor the situation and use less aggressive procedures before moving to surgical intervention. Some doctors like to use more aggressive treatment methods from the beginning. By getting a second opinion, you can expand your options about different treatment methods which may be most suitable for you and your situation. SECOND OPINIONS DON’T HURT AND MAY EVEN HELP Keep in mind that doctors are human and they too can make mistakes or be faced with unusual or challenging cases. When the first doctor’s opinion is the same or similar to the second doctor’s, your confidence will be increased. With serious illnesses that may require extended treatment, you should feel confident that you have chosen the most appropriate treatment for your particular situation. PATIENT RIGHTS A patient has rights and one of your most important rights is the ability to get a second opinion about your diagnosis and learn as much as you can about treatment options. Being informed is critical in deciding your choice of treatment. WHAT WILL IT COST ME? Call your insurance company before you get a second opinion. Ask if they will pay for this office visit. Many health insurance providers do. Ask if there are any special procedures you or your primary care doctor needs to follow. Most insurance plans will pay for at least part of the cost while Medicare will pay 80% of the cost. To learn about second opinions call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) or for specific rules by state for a second opinion you can visit http:// www.medicare.gov/coverage/home.asp DO NOT RELY ON THE INTERNET OR A TELEPHONE CONVERSATION. When you get a second opinion, you need to be seen by a doctor. That doctor will perform a physical examination and perhaps other tests. The doctor will also thoroughly review your medical records, ask you questions, and address your concerns. UtahCancerConnections.com 13


KNOWLEDGE

Understanding Brain Tumors The complex structure of the brain and the role that each part plays in our everyday thoughts and behaviors is truly astonishing. Every thought, movement or emotion we experience begins with the brain working with the spinal cord (the central nervous system (CNS)) to control the physiological and psychological functions of our body. Generally our brain includes three major parts: • • •

The cerebrum controls thinking, learning, problem solving, emotions, speech, reading, writing, and voluntary movement. The cerebellum controls movement, balance, and posture. The brain stem connects the brain to the spinal cord, and controls breathing, heart rate, and the nerves and muscles that we use to see, hear, walk, talk, and eat.

A brain tumor is an abnormal growth of tissue in the brain or central spine that can disrupt proper brain function. Common brain tumor symptoms include long-term headaches, seizures or convulsions, difficulty thinking and speaking/finding words, personality changes, tingling or stiffness in one side of the body, a loss of balance, vision changes, nausea, and/or disorientation. But symptoms vary greatly from person to person because of two factors: where the tumor is located and the size of the tumor. While brain tumors can affect different parts of the body based on where they are located within the brain, the size of a brain tumor does not determine how severe the symptoms a person experiences might be. For example, a very small tumor located in an area of the brain that controls motor functions or movement can cause significant difficulty in moving arms, legs or hands.

BRAIN TUMOR SYMPTOMS: • • • • • • • •

Headaches Vomiting Personality or Mood Changes Seizures Changes in Vision or Hearing Cognitive Issues or Changes Changes in Speech Physical Changes / Motor Function

Since brain tumors can form in different areas, develop from different cell types, and have different treatment symptoms, it’s important to work with a doctor who can measure nervous system functions, physical and mental alertness, and include the examination of normal brain functions from reflexes to judgment, smell and taste.

The Utah Brain Tumor Alliance works to create awareness about brain tumors and raise funds for needs of those diagnosed. To learn more about how you can get involved please visit: www.walktoendbraintumors.org

Once a neurological examination has been performed, a doctor will be able to tell where the tumor cells began and whether they are cancerous (malignant) or not (benign).

For additional information about brain tumors and/or organizations who support research and patient initiatives, please visit:

There are over 120 types of brain and central nervous system tumors and to-date an estimated 688,000+ people in the U.S. are living with a primary brain or central nervous system (CNS) tumor diagnosis: 138,000 with malignant tumors and 550,000 with benign tumors.

American Brain Tumor Association: www.abta.org

14 UtahCancerConnections.com

National Brain Tumor Society: www.braintumor.org Miles for Hope Foundation: www.milesforhope.org


WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT COLON CANCER

Affects men and women equally

On average, your risk is about 1 in 20

90% of new cases occur in people 50 or older

People with a first-degree relative (parent, sibling or offspring) have two to three times the risk of developing the disease

RISK FACTORS Studies show people in the following categories are at greater risk of developing the disease:

What You Can Do

Individuals with a personal and/or family history of polyps or cancer People over age 50 Those with ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease Individuals with the genetic conditions Hereditary Nonpolyposis Colon Cancer (HNPCC) or Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP) • Jews of Eastern European descent and certain ethnic groups including African Americans, Native Americans and Alaskan Natives

• Get screened at age 50, or sooner if you are at higher risk

SYMPTOMS

• Don’t use tobacco products

• • • •

Oftentimes, symptoms do not appear in early stages of the disease. Do not wait for symptoms before talking to your doctor. • • • • • •

A change in bowel habits Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool Persistent abdominal discomfort Nausea or vomiting Unexplained weight loss Chronic fatigue

• Maintain a healthy weight • Adopt a physically active lifestyle • Eat a healthy diet • Limit alcohol intake

For more information, visit ccalliance.org or call (877) 422-2030.

The Colon Cancer Alliance, Inc. is a not-for-profit, 501 (c) 3 organization. Dress In Blue Day™ and For a Future Free of Colon Cancer™ are trademarks of the Colon Cancer Alliance. © Colon Cancer Alliance. All rights reserved.


Photo Credit: Michelle Gardner


Appreciating the Little Things

What Brain Cancer Taught An 11 Year Old Girl About Life By Nidia McMullen | Utah Brain Tumor Alliance

April 5th, 2013 was a day that changed everything for 10-year-old Aspen Gardner and her family. Hearing the words “your daughter has a brain tumor” was a nightmare experience for her mother, Michelle. At first Aspen was told she had a tumor the size of an orange, with no treatment options or chance of surviving beyond 8 months. They sought a second opinion at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA, and coordinating with Primary Children’s Hospital, they opted for a biopsy.

Although Aspen has MRI’s and blood work every 3- 4 months, she and her mother have learned to enjoy every second of life and to focus on having a healthy, happy, balanced lifestyle.

The procedure revealed Aspen had an Anaplastic Ependymoma Stage 3, a fast growing tumor, but one they could treat. Ependymomas are tumors that arise from a thin layer of cells lining the ventricular walls and central canal of the spinal cord. Although this is the 6th most common type of brain tumor in children, there is little data available.

Michelle shares how the entire family is finding a new normal with more clarity and appreciation for the little things in life. “I think the biggest thing is staying positive in a negative situation and never giving up. I had to stay strong for her. She fought so hard, how could I not! Aspen never complained and had a great attitude, she amazed us all!”

Her first surgery was April 12th, 2013 where the bulk of the tumor was removed. After surgery, however, she contracted bacterial meningitis, with the 2nd highest white cell count ever seen at Primary Children’s. She went in for a second surgery a little over two weeks later and had a drain placed in her spinal column for 5 days.

Michelle says she was in complete survival mode, trying to juggle a balance of taking care of Aspen and her family. “I think taking the approach of ‘Ok, this is what we need to do and this is how we are going to do it’ was the best approach. We had the best family and friend support you could ask for, that also helped. I feel like if I could make it through this, I can make it through anything! I feel truly blessed to have my sweet Aspen here today, healthy and happy, and also the health of my two boys.“

Aspen participated in the Go Grey in May 5k brain tumor awareness walk on Memorial Day 2013, and ran most of the way. From June 5th to July 23rd, 2013 she was on the Ketogenic diet and had 33 radiation treatments in 6 weeks. Post-radiation she had acupuncture and her diet was changed to rebuild her kidneys. So far scans have been clean.

“This experience has been the hardest thing I have ever gone through”, says Michelle. “I wished it was me instead of her. There is nothing harder than watching your child go through something like this. It makes you realize what is really important in life. Nothing goes back to the way it was.

Today Aspen is a competitive figure skater after learning to ice skate when she was four years old. On June 6th, 2013 she was told by her surgeon she

could skate again - that very day if she wanted to. Aspen moved courageoulsy forward and just nine months after finishing her cancer treatments competed in the Utah Winter Games receiving two 1st place positions and one 2nd place. She now practices 3 to 4 days a week and continues to compete, understanding the importance of pursuing her dreams after battling brain cancer. In addition to skating, Aspen has tried ballet and is now playing Jr. Jazz basketball, coached by her mom Michelle. She is having fun trying out a new sport with a cousin and friends on her team. She loves watching her 18-year-old brother, Braxton, participate in football and wrestling and is one of his biggest fans! She also has a younger brother Cruz, who is 4. One of Aspen’s favorite life quotes is from Tinker Bell: “With faith, trust, and a little pixie dust, miracles do happen!” Nidia McMullen became involved in brain cancer advocacy because her mother Monique is a longterm Meningioma survivor. Nidia works with Claudette Saville Felice, also a brain tumor survivor at the Utah Brain Tumor Alliance, a non-profit organization. They host a walk/run fundraiser: “Go Grey in May 5K to End Brain Cancer” held annually at Liberty Park on Memorial Day. Get more information about the race at www.walktoendbraintumors.org.

UtahCancerConnections.com 17


SURVIVORSHIP

ht

TIPS FOR A HEALTHY

ig and we

^ LIFE AFTER

CANCER

By Jamie Jensen | Contributing Writer

It is the start of a new year and as most of us peruse our New Year’s Resolution lists we see familiar goals of organization, budget keeping, new job and the old dependable, “lose weight.” But for those who are in the midst of cancer treatment or are navigating life after cancer, it is important to educate yourself on the best way to cross this last one off your list. Celestial Reimers is an oncology-certified, registered dietitian nutritionist at the Linda B. and Robert B. Wiggins WellnessSurvivorship center at The Huntsman Cancer Institute. Her job is to help people improve their diet at every stage of cancer survivorship, whether newly diagnosed or having completed treatment several years ago. “The advice I give to my clients is it is never too early or too late to make healthy lifestyle changes,” Reimers says. “It will take patience to start noticing results. You may find challenges that weren’t existent before you had cancer. Don’t compare yourself today to the person you were in the past; you have changed and that’s okay.”

Year’s resolution of a healthier lifestyle we have to look at both sides of the coin - diet and exercise. Catherine Standiford, the owner and founder of Cancer Rehabilitation Centers in Sandy, works closely with oncologists and the patient to help improve quality of life. She says one of the biggest complaints she hears in her office is how much harder it is to lose weight following treatment. When specifically talking about breast cancer, Standiford says, “Most breast cancer patients experience weight gain from the time of diagnosis. One reason is some chemotherapy drugs may cause women to prematurely start menopause. Secondly, chemotherapy and other treatments can cause a fight or flight response in the body which releases adrenaline and cortisol. Stressors have been linked to weight gain when extra cortisol is released into the body.”

She points out there are reasons cancer patients and survivors may have a harder time losing weight than the average person. “Cancer patients often lose lean muscle, which helps keep our metabolism robust during treatment. Once the muscle mass has decreased, it is easier to gain fat once eating has normalized,” Reimers explains.

The internet is saturated with sites claiming to have the latest and greatest anti-cancer diet. Both Reimers and Standiford caution against trusting theses online sources. Instead they recommend their clients first talk to their doctor and then start with a healthy diet and exercise. If looking online for evidence-based information, Reimers recommends references from government agencies and universities. Your doctor, dietitian or local library would also be good points of reference, she added.

She also points out cancer patients are frequently given medications related to weight gain, such as steroids or hormone blocking drugs. Cancer patients may also have to deal with pain, fatigue, neuropathy, and other physical issues that make shopping, preparing food, and exercising more difficult. To succeed in our New

“Diet is a very important part in weight loss and cancer survivorship, specifically, cancer patients need a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables, and lots of them,” Reimers shares. She also explains that losing fat and exercising daily are related to better outcomes during survivorship, including risk of relapse, risk of secondary

18 UtahCancerConnections.com

cancer, and reducing risk of chronic disease. She reminds us “you cannot exercise out a bad diet, and you need both to really make a difference.” At CRC they focus on improving strength and cardiovascular endurance, fixing balance disturbances from chemotherapy, and helping the patient regain range of motion that may have been lost due to a surgery or inactivity. Keep in mind you are an individual with individual needs. The most important thing that Standiford tells her patients is no two bodies are the same and there is no perfect plan for two people. She also suggests starting slow with your program using the guidelines by the American Heart Association of 150 minutes per week of moderate to rigorous exercise, and stresses the importance of different types of exercise into your routine including cardiovascular endurance, strength training, balance and range of motion. Make sure you are listening to your body when starting a new workout. Standiford explains that fatigue is the biggest side effect they see in their clinic and it changes daily, so being able to adapt your workouts daily to your energy levels is very important. “It can be discouraging, but starting a healthy lifestyle feels so rewarding, and often it becomes the goal of my patients instead of specific weight loss,” Catherine shares. As with any new goal, having a support group is very important. By starting slow, listening to your body, following a healthy diet and exercise plan and surrounding yourself with support, you too can have a happy and healthier 2015.


Comfort-Comfort-Comfort Find the right fit for all your postmastectomy needs at Women Restore By Jamie Jensen | Contributing Writer

As a breast cancer survivor myself, I can assure you that finding the right postmastectomy bra by yourself or online is about as easy as finding the mythical perfect pair of jeans. Lucky for us there are post-mastectomy boutiques with trained staff to help breast cancer patients find that perfect fit.

Women, myself included, often find they are more comfortable sleeping with a bra on, especially if they have reconstruction. Women Restore carries several Anita and Amoena sleep bras, as well as temporary breast forms to help women find their new shape during the recovery and reconstruction periods.

Misty Galbraith is the owner of Women Restore, the only post-mastectomy store in Utah County. She is a certified bra fitter who did specific training for postmastectomy clients. Women Restore carries a full line of post-mastectomy and lumpectomy products including pocket bras, breast forms and partials, pocket swim suits and compression sleeves.

Prosthesis can be an integral part of finding the “new normal” for a breast cancer patient. Misty explains that using a prosthesis is vital for post-mastectomy women to help restore their balance and skeletal symmetry.

Comfort is the biggest problem for women, especially during the weeks immediately following surgery. Women Restore carries several “stepping-stone” bras that are light, stretchy and made of super-soft material, perfect to speed the recovery period.

“Without a replacement for the weight that has been removed, women may experience balance issues and skeletal discomfort such as back and neck pain. The body is used to having breast tissue and it misses the heft of that tissue when it has been removed. Replacing the weight will not only help a woman’s self-image but it is physically necessary for a healthy lifestyle,” she says. Misty’s passion for the breast cancer cause is evident the moment you meet her. Her mother, Nola Solt, co-owner of Women Restore, is a breast cancer survivor.

Together, their goal is to help their clients feel loved and supported as they continue their journey of survivorship. “The happiest moments I’ve experienced have been hearing a happy sigh from inside the dressing room, followed with, ‘Look at me! I’m a girl again!’ or, ‘You understand breast cancer, why did no one tell me about wearing a sleeve?’” Misty shares. Not only does Women Restore help the breast cancer community, it also offers custom, larger bra sizes DD-H and beyond, nursing bras and sports bras. The boutique has a charming, quiet atmosphere where you can feel confident you will receive the individualized help you need. After getting fitted for your new bra don’t forget to check out the other great finds this store has to offer, including my favorite, the Renewing Body Gelee by Arbonne. Women Restore is located in Spanish Fork at 1171 Expressway Lane East of Kmart. Look for the blue awnings near Diamond Embroidery, Esprit De Corps Dance and Energy Explosion Gym.

“I am very impressed with the open and friendly atmosphere at Women Restore. It is so nice to have this place here in Utah County. Women Restore understands women and breast cancer.” Proud to carry products by:

~ Rhonda Walker Weaver

385-999-0099 Hours: Mon-Thur 10AM-3PM All other hours welcome by appointment

1171 Expressway Lane in Spanish Fork UtahCancerConnections.com 19


SHIFT

ING FROM FEAR

to Peace

By Kathy Truman | Contributing Writer

In the previous issue I shared information about physically moving from fear to peace through a series of movements that have been shown to decrease stress and refocus the mind. Physical movement is one tool to move from fear to peace but more can be done. Here are more insights on how to mentally move from fear to peace that revolve around words, thoughts and spiritual beliefs.

may not be the most beneficial for our wellbeing but it is possible to change our thoughts and program new pathways that lead to better health. Take an inventory of your thoughts throughout the day and decide if they are helping you or causing more grief. You may realize a need to change your thoughts and create a more positive environment in your mind.

Research has proven that our thoughts have a profound effect on our wellbeing. In a compelling study, Dr. Masaru Emoto, an internationally renowned Japanese researcher and author of ‘Secret Life of Water’, brought this concept to life during a project where jars of water were labeled with different words (love, fear, hate, thank you, you idiot, innocence, etc.) and each word - in thought was directed at the individual jars.

While we often cannot change our circumstances, we can change our perspective about our circumstances. Many times it can be very difficult to make sense of suffering and illness. In frustration we may cry out, “Why me, Lord? What did I do to bring this suffering upon me? Am I being punished? Chastened? Did I do something to attract this cancer to me?” When we suffer for no discernible reason, it is very easy to feel like a victim.

Dr. Emoto then flash-froze droplets of each jar and visually captured the structure of water at the moment of freezing using high-speed photography. The results were astounding! Water droplets from the jars that had positive words written on them were in beautiful snowflake-like shapes while droplets from the jars with negative words either could not form a shape or were very misshapen. Considering that our bodies are made up of about 80% water, this study is very sobering. Dr. Emoto’s water study effectively proved that thoughts and words have a direct connection to our physical health.

Although the Law of Attraction is an absolute law of the universe, as is the Law of Gravity, I believe that God can transcend this law. It is my belief that sometimes there is a much higher purpose for our illnesses and suffering. In the book, ‘The Soul’s Remembrance’, author Roy Mills shares information about spiritual lessons and the choices he made before he was born as he prepared for life on earth. In his account, he explains:

Our thoughts and words are not just inanimate words on a jar. Each word has emotion attached. They come with intent and with the history of our life experiences. According to various studies, the thoughts we most commonly think will actually create their own neural pathways in our brain. As new stimuli follow the path of least resistance, we are more and more likely to think the same thoughts on a daily basis. It’s as if we have our own mental ‘playlist’ that plays over and over again in our mind. We may find we also have some ‘greatest hits’ that we get stuck on! The question then becomes, ‘what are we repeating in our minds?’ ‘Is it time to change the station?’ Thought patterns stem from years of listening to others around us and creating thoughts based on life events, information received, and daily experiences. It is easy to be conditioned to thoughts that 2018 UtahCancerConnections.com UtahCancerConnections.com

“Our physical bodies are only a temporary home for our spirits, and nothing can truly harm who we really are. So when I selected my earthly experiences, I had no concern for what they would do to my physical body. I knew that the more I suffered for others, or because of others, the more I would grow in spirit. And with that knowledge, I had a completely different perspective on adversity and the experiences I chose for my own life. The angels explained to me that an illness triggers a chain of events that can lead to spiritual growth. Some spirits choose a life of extreme sacrifice or nearly unbearable suffering. The light of God shines brightly around these people, and in Heaven they are thought of as mighty spirits, because they come to earth to suffer so that others can grow in understanding and love. Some mighty spirits choose to...suffer a life-threatening illness such as cancer...Many of these people who suffer from such challenges live their lives thinking they are inferior or unworthy...But the truth is that they are mighty spirits who denied themselves and have come to earth to help others grow. These courageous souls chose their conditions in order to inspire


love, compassion, caring, patience, or forgiveness in others. They also suffer to gain experience and knowledge that will help others who face similar challenges...Like Jesus, the mightiest Spirit of all, these souls suffer in our place so that we can learn, experience, and grow without bearing the same cross they carry.” What a paradigm shift! This new perspective was confirmed again when a cancer survivor friend shared a very vivid dream that she found extremely helpful. She dreamt she was in a room in heaven with all of her family members when her particular type of cancer came into the room. She told me that it said, “Someone here needs to experience me for the learning experience of all.” As she looked around at her husband, children and grandchildren, she couldn’t imagine any of them having to experience the cancer, so she raised her hand and said, “I will. I will take this experience to spare my loved ones.” From these experiences, and the information presented on the power of thoughts, I have personally changed my viewpoints on the importance of filling my mind with positive words and opening my mind to new perspectives. Both shifts have benefited my life and given me greater power to move from fear to peace. I hope these words for thought will do the same for you. Kathy Truman is an energy worker, life coach, and an emotional & spiritual counselor. As the founder of Warriors at the Gate (an addiction support group), Kathy has empowered hundreds of individuals to regain strength and triumph over adversity. Kathy is the author of inspirational CD’s and is a highly requested speaker at healing conferences and retreats.

Does your corporate wellness program have cancer?

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straight talk with Dov (telling it like it is)

Dov Siporin is a 7 Year Stage 4 Metastatic Colon Cancer Survivor Who Refuses To Give Up

I WILL Though I shake with fear, I will steady my hands, breathe deeply and continue. Though the blows knock me down, force the air from my lungs and send me reeling, I will stand to fight again. Though my body changes before me, as it is torn and stitched, cut and pieced back together, though the hair falls from me in patches, though my very skin becomes alien to me, a mottled cratered reflection of the battle waging deep within, I will learn to love the strength, the stubbornness, the journey that is written in these angry red scars, Though pain courses through me, finding new avenues past my defenses, I will know that the pain reminds me that I still live. Though I am exhausted, unable to take another step, I will find strength. I will smile, and continue to walk forward. Though my life continually hangs on a few words, a moment, a bright spot shining on a computer screen...on

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the stubbornness of wayward cells, I will live in that moment. I will stretch it out into a lifetime.

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22 UtahCancerConnections.com

By Dov Siporin


Cancer Support

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GOING THROUGH CANCER NEEDS TO FEEL ALONE. ThyCa: Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association

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PANCREATIC CANCER SURVIVORS Join us to learn more about the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network Discounts, Freebies & Resources for Those Facing Cancer and what you can do to make an impact locally. For more www.HappyChemo.com information please visit www.pancan.org/saltlakecity Survivors, friends, family and supporters welcome!

Young Survivor Sisters Breast Cancer Support Group

Where Support is Guaranteed and Boobs are Optional Young Survivor Sisters is a free, non-denominational breast cancer support group for women living in Utah who were diagnosed in their 20's, 30's and 40's. To learn more visit youngsurvivorsisters.blogspot.com or call 801.732.2707

“I’ve felt so welcome in this group and together we’re figuring it out.” - Shayla Lifting Hearts Breast Cancer Support Group (Located in Utah Valley, UT)

A non-profit organization dedicated to providing support and wellness programs for individuals and families affected by breast cancer. In our efforts to better help and mentor those who join this group, we provide… Monthly support meetings (2nd Thursday), Quarterly activities, Service projects, fundraising opportunities, Bosom Buddies one-on-one Mentoring Program Contact Us: liftinghearts2011@gmail.com Phone: 801-376-7377 Blog: liftinghearts.blogspot.com Website: lifting-hearts.com

ThyCa Salt Lake City meets on the third Saturday of each month from 11:00 to 12:30 at the IMC Jon and Karen Huntsman Cancer Center ( 2nd Floor, South Conference Room, 5121 Cottonwood St. Murray, UT 84107) Questions? Contact Chris Prestano 801-382-7THY (7849) or e-mail: saltlakecity-ut@thyca.org

“Triunfadoras”

Hispanic Breast Cancer Support Group Support group meetings are held the SECOND TUESDAY OF EACH MONTH AT 6:00 PM at the Intermountain Medical Cancer Center, 5121 Cottonwood Street, 2nd Floor. For more information please call: Sara Carbajal, Program Coordinator 801-265-1111 OR 801-597-1159

Young Chicks Support Group (St. George) Southern Utah Survivors are welcome to attend the Young Chicks Support Group held the 2nd Thursday of each month at Carol’s Personal Mastectomy located at 330 E. 600 S. in St. George, Utah. This group is for women diagnosed in their 20’s, 30’s and 40’s. To learn more call (435) 688-0452.

UTAH CANCER FOUNDATION OFFERS

MEN’S CANCER SUPPORT GROUP This is an open discussion group providing support, education and information for men experiencing and living with all types of cancer. The group meets the second Wednesday of each month from 5 – 6:30 p.m. at the Utah Cancer Specialists’ Cancer Center, 3838 South 700 East (northwest corner 39th South and 7th East in the big building immediately west of Zions Bank). The group frequently has a speaker, but time is always given to conversation with new members, those who have questions or needs and those who have experienced a change in their cancer or treatment. You will certainly find the support and friendship you need. Pizza and sodas are provided. Utah Cancer Foundation is a 501©-3 providing programs and services to support and assist cancer patients and their caregivers. All of our services and programs are offered free of charge.

FOR INFOMRATION ABOUT ADVERTISEMENT OPPORTUNITIES CALL 801-388-1699 UtahCancerConnections.com 23


See what you can do when you wear

WEAR BLUE ON FRIDAY, MARCH 6, 2015 GET IDEAS, RESOURCES AND MORE AT

dressinblueday.org The Colon Cancer Alliance’s mission is to knock colon cancer out of the top three cancer killers. We are doing this by championing prevention, funding cutting-edge research and providing the highest quality patient support services. For more information about our programs and services please visit ccalliance.org or call our Helpline at (877) 422-2030. The Colon Cancer Alliance, Inc. is a not-for-profit, 501(c) 3 organization. Dress In Blue Day™ is a trademark of the Colon Cancer Alliance. © Colon Cancer Alliance. All rights reserved.