Saturday, April 12, 2008

day +235

Thursday evening I attended OMG! Young Adult Cancer Conference at the Marriott Marquis in Manhattan. I'm so glad I was able to make it. Not only was the conference's program enriching, I also caught up with friends, such as Mary, and befriended new people as well.

Some of the points made at the conference that grabbed my immediate attention are:

  • participation in clinical trials are key to the advancement of cancer treatment
  • long-term follow up care for adolescent and young adult (AYA) survivors is critical and consequently, good health insurance coverage is an important issue for this group
  • of all the age groups, the least amount of improvement in cancer survival is between ages 25-35
  • lymphoma and leukemia together constituted 26% of AYA cancer diagnoses between 1975 and 2000; lymphoma makes up the largest percentage block for AYA diagnoses with skin cancer coming in at second at 15%
  • according to the World Health Organization, there are 27 kinds of lymphoma
  • less than 10% of oncologists inform all eligible patients about fertility risks and options

Following the conference which ended at about 9:30, I joined the other attendees (at least 50 people) at the nearby Planet Hollywood for a very spirited after party. I got so caught up there that I forgot to take any photos, so the only one I have to show for from that entire evening is the photo above. It's no wonder that I didn't get home until about midnight.

What brought all of us together Thursday night was not simply our cancer diagnoses, but more importantly our burning desire to persevere.

Early this morning I walked to Franz Sigel Park in order to capture more images of the lovely daffodils there.

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