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Saturday, April 10, 2021

Informative Intelligence

#AtoZChallenge 2021 April Blogging from A to Z Challenge letter I

#AtoZChallenge 


There are millions of forwards and youtube videos that will tell you how you can overcome cancer. Those people make cancer to be something which can be made to disappear with a magic wand, off course that magic wand is with them and it comes with a price. It is not difficult to realize that much of that information is at best inaccurate and moreover dangerously misleading, but for those who are desperate, these false claims give false hope. There are tons of these videos, websites and forward messages spreading myths about cancer cure. When the loved ones become influenced by these myths, everyday leading to treatment becomes a torment for the person fighting cancer. They are burdened to fight these myths as well.




Once you are diagnosed with cancer, everyone around you becomes an expert on the subject and the treatment plan you should undergo. I had a big challenge of stopping people from interfering with my treatment. It is easier fending off your so called well-wishers and friends than your immediate family. 

Since cancer treatment involves surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy which can have severe side-effects, the decisions are not easy either for the person going through cancer nor their loved ones. They get to hear new words which sound scary, there is anxiety about the outcome, the myth says cancer is a killer, and there is a sense of urgency pushed in.. as though in a few days time cancer may spread everywhere. Cancer treatment at times brings in huge bills, and for those who are not insured, finance becomes a big challenge as well. I agree that early diagnosis and treatment is important, but you always have time to research options, clear your doubts with your oncologist, consider the risks and benefits of your treatment  and make your informed intelligent choice. I think I made one, because here I am after 25 years, alive and kicking. 

One of the major causes of concern in cancer treatment is the removal of the body part, in my case which was breast. Isn’t there any other option? Do you have to go bald and lose your breast at the age of 29? Is allopathic treatment the only way out of this? The questions are thrown at you with good intention, but it brings in a lot of confusion about the decision you are taking. At times I had to question my decisions and intelligence. At such times I had  to stay calm and stick with the evidence based information and not by rhetoric or anecdote based projections. 

An important part of treatment is getting proper information regarding the type of cancer, not surrendering to myths and not listening to self called experts, no matter how much you love them. No amount of love a person has for you, or you have for that person will make them an expert oncologist overnight. So, get the right information from the right people.

It is absolutely OK if you feel you need a second or third opinion from a different doctor.  

There is no miraculous cure for cancer, though the internet is flooded by the videos of people who claim that they were cured of cancer with certain alternative treatments. I am not calling anyone liars, but what is the percentage of success for that particular miracle if at all what they are claiming is true? Maybe there was a success case, but how many have failed? Are there any stats for that?

I wouldn’t say that the natural world doesn’t have a cure for cancer. It may have. I have read from a research based website that the cancer drug taxol was first extracted from the bark and needles of the Pacific Yew tree. But that doesn’t mean that everyone chewing on the bark will not get cancer or that having the bark as food will cure you of the tumour. There is a procedure of extracting, purifying and combining it with other drugs  in the right doses for successfully combating cancer.

Be informed, be intelligent, be insightful and fight cancer the right way the first time you attack it. Second time, it is always going to be much harder. I wish everyone out there who is fighting cancer a successful outcome and healthy life thereafter.



1 comment:

  1. Such good advice. It is so overwhelming navigating cancer and even well intentioned friends are not necessarily helpful. You are dealing with so many variables and never have "perfect" information. Both my friends who have dealt with breast cancer had a similar approach to yours (informed, intelligent choices) and both, I am happy to say, had successful outcomes. Weekends In Maine

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