Help in the fight against cancer
America has come a long way in fighting cancer since the dreaded disease was linked to smoking in 1964.
Early treatments for all cancers were similar, killing not only the cancer cells, but the good cells needed to get better.
Now, there’s new drugs tailored to the specific cancer gene found in an individual. Radiation therapy side effects are diminished from what they were in past years, and there are far better detection tools available.
As awareness about cancer has increased, people are becoming more proactive about their health.
Perhaps the most recognized month where cancer is at the forefront is October, which is recognized as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Breast cancer is the second only to skin cancer as the most common cancer affecting women. Statistics show one in eight women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.
The good news is, with early detection and modern treatment methods, there’s plenty of hope that the disease, once found, will be halted and will not diminish an individual’s expected life span.
These advances would not have been possible without federally funded research coupled with private fundraising efforts to help.
The American Cancer Society holds events to raise funds throughout the year, several of which are held in Haywood. Many other groups have joined the effort to help, whether it is fundraisers for specific individuals such as the “Pretty in Pink” bake sale on Oct. 23 scheduled at the Maggie Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation Center to benefit a breast cancer patient to the hospital foundation/health department Oct. 26 “Power of Pink” 5K Race to the many individual promotions by local businesses that donate funds to organizations fighting breast cancer. New this year in Haywood is the Canton Relay for Life Evening of Hope Gala on Nov. 2.
Opportunities to make a difference in our own lives, as well as those of others, surround us. We need to take the next step by becoming involved.