Weekly Round-Up: #WorldHealthDay Edition


Today is #WorldHealthDay – a day to renew calls for the recognition of health as a universal human right.  Access to the best care is a lottery depending on where you live in the world and your financial situation. I know that many of you struggle with this and have written about it (see this post from Chris Lewis’ archive on cancer poverty.)

Things can be particularly difficult in the US, as Barbara points out in her latest post, A Call to Action for Women’s Medical Rights With Breast Cancer:

This country is not founded on the basis of the survival of the fittest or wealthiest but rather on equality for everyone. We do not allow the taking of another person’s life in this country by another individual, even in our healthcare facilities. By not allowing the tests recommended by our trained medical personnel, you are denying medical care to people who may ultimately die as a result.

We know that one day of awareness raising won’t change things, but I know we will keep on working in our own communities to advocate for change, beyond this one day.  With this in mind, it’s great to hear from Amy who has been granted access to pembrolizumab.

Continuing the theme of parity of care for all, Carolyn has written several excellent posts recently on how women’s cardiac symptoms are treated differently from men. In a recent post, Why won’t doctors believe women? she writes about the challenge of a physician’s internal bias and suggests some ways to address this.

I shared the WHO’s definition of health as  a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity,” in a talk I gave last week and this definition is brought beautifully to life in both Audrey‘s and Elizabeth‘s latest posts.

Nancy features a #MetsMonday guest post from Abigail Johnston this week. My favorite quote from the post below:

This new life is very far from what I experienced before cancer and despite the fact that we live with the dark storm cloud of my truncated life expectancy hovering overhead, there is unexpected joy.

Excited to hear Karin’s latest news about her radio show, wonderfully titled, Soul Cravings. Explaining the title, Karin writes:

My show is called Soul Cravings, which is about what we all crave for and what we don’t have enough of – love, certainty, understanding, health, hope, motivation, inspiration, direction…

I’m also really excited to hear that Connie is preparing to launch her new book – please join me in sending her every good wish for a successful launch.

Dee reviews Women Rowing North – Navigating Life’s Currents and Flourishing As We Age by Mary Pipher –  a book on growing older and dealing with life’s challenges.

Sarah is three chemo cycles down this week.

Dr. Attai reports on a study recently published in JAMA Internal Medicine which casts doubts on the commonly held belief that the addition of screening ultrasound to screening mammography improves the rate of breast cancer detection.

A delightful travel tale from Julia this week who takes a trip down memory lane and revisits the home of Bournville chocolate in the UK.

“Two patient advocates, both breast cancer survivors, walk into a tattoo parlor in downtown Seattle.” So begin’s Terri‘s story on breast reconstruction tattoos.

Margaret reports back on how she feels one month after stopping Tamoxifen.

A warm welcome back to the blogosphere to Judith who feels she’s somewhat behind in her blogging updates. Oh but you’re not behind Judith, any one of us can just jump in anytime and everyone is so happy to see you.

Siobhan is feeling hopeful that recent developments in the Standardisation of Breast Density inform policies for women in the US may be the start of global policy changes.

Janet‘s latest post on The Gift That Keeps on Giving captures the one-step-forward-two-steps-back path that is cancer.  See also Johanna’s post on dealing with the chronic, unrelenting nature of cancer and Becky‘s thoughts on how the emotional toll seems to never stop.

Thoughtful post from Claudia on how cancer (and life) disrupts the way we thought things were going to be.

Really interesting read on Ilene’s blog on the paradoxical nature of hope.

I’ve already told Cathy that I had to steel myself to read her latest in-depth piece on the link between alcohol and breast cancer.  I knew what I was going to read, and as someone who likes a glass of wine, I didn’t want to go there. But as always Cathy is right on the money with her evidence-based research – I really don’t see how anyone can argue with the science – and as always I so appreciate her non-judgemental approach to sharing this important information.

You get to decide where you stand on the issue. You get to decide whether or not you want to take that risk, or even whether or not to choose to believe the studies.

There’s no judgment either way.

If you’re conflicted, consider experimenting with not drinking and see how that feels. If it doesn’t work for you? Pour yourself a glass of something and enjoy it guilt free.

Finally this week, thanks JoAnn for alerting me to the 10th Anniversary A to Z Challenge I think I’ve already come across this in the blogosphere and what a cool way to keep a consistent blogging schedule going for the month of April. I’m going to take up the challenge starring tomorrow – who’s with me?? 

Until next week,

Yours with much love always

Marie xxx