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head and neck cancer (47)

I am very impressed by the recent Make Sense Campaign run by the European Head and Neck Cancer society (EHNS). 

Here is an infographic they put out in September for the European Head and Neck Cancer Week.

(I used Docufreezer to convert the graphics below from PDF form so that you could see them without having to click.)…

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Network News 2 October 2017

Advocacy for people affected by head and neck cancer - "Nothing About Us Without Us!

The Latin phrase is,  Nihil de nobis, sine nobis. The idea; that no policy should be decided by any representative, without the full and direct participation of those affected by that policy. This principle extends to national, local and sector policy making. It gives the opportunity for full participation from service users, consumers, and…

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Cosette's Story

Cosette Calder, who lives in Christchurch, had a lot to live for when she was diagnosed with head and neck cancer. Hard as her treatment was, she knew her cancer was curable and she had a five-year-old son to look after. Cosette’s early symptoms are interesting too. They show us how throat cancer can manifest itself.  

Here is her story.…

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Network News - 10 July 2017

Who said this about the New Zealand health system? "We have a world-class health system but third class treatment, and we have the capacity to make a big difference. Not enough people with the greatest need are getting access to our services because we're stuck in a 19th-century view, but it's the 21st century."

Not me, and I do agree.…

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Path to Diagnosis: Part II

This is the second part of the stories of late diagnosis collected and collated by Olwen Williams. These two illustrate how pretty obvious signs of cancer can be missed until it is too late for an easy solution. 

As we build up to WHNCD, we will publish more stories about aspects of the cancer to raise awareness. 

Anne…

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A small turnout on Thursday 6 July. The America's Cup parade was on and the weather was atrocious. Nevertheless we had a fruitful meeting, getting to know a new member of our network, Sharmayne and welcoming Marlene Evans back into our midst. 

We started with a video about WHNCD, a day of observance that started in 2014. It featured Jatin P. Shah who is the head of the International Federation of Head and Neck Oncological Societies as well as Michael Douglas and…

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How to raise awareness of our support network on World Head and Neck Cancer Day? How to make new head and neck cancer patients aware that we exist and they are not alone? Diana and Olwen came up with a plan: provide care packs for patients undergoing treatment. 

We had recently rebranded with our tui…

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It often surprises just how many people get a head and neck cancer. I recently discovered a singer/song writer favourite, John Prine, had a cancer back in the 90s and Val Kilmer recently confirmed that he actually did have a cancer this year (after first denying it.) Both survived and are apparently going strong - something the stories below suggest are becoming more of the norm. However, as always, a little skepticism never hurts.…

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Network News - 3 July 2017

Since our last Network News one of our members, Udaya Kovvuru, passed away on 21st June 2017. We met Udaya, and his wife Shoba last year after his surgery. We have followed his journey through our Facebook group. Udaya, was fortunate to have wonderful support from Shoba. She is a wonderfully generous and wise person, sharing their story, and…

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Path to Diagnosis, Part 1

With WHNCD less than a month away, I am replacing Friendly Friday with stories on aspects of head and neck cancer care. Olwen Williams collected and collated these stories.

Head and  neck cancers have a variety of symptoms and are often not recognised for some time.  Here’s how a number of people were diagnosed. These symptoms include a cough, a sore on the tongue, a swelling on the nose, swallowing problems, blocked sinuses. Other members, not…

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The disfiguring effects of treatment are well known to many patients who have been through it - scarring, missing teeth, muscle wastage and more. The story below however does suggest some help with one of the common effects - lymphedema - could be on the way.

Meanwhile consider:
The Prince from Cinderella must have had a serious foot fetish to not remember any other discernible characteristic about her or maybe the only difference between passion and…

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"Scanxiety": Tuesday Contributor

“Scanxiety” is a big part of the head and neck cancer experience. I’m sure many of you will be able to relate to Kathryn’s words. 

We have asked Kathryn to write a column from time to time as a Tuesday Contributor.

Greg has been called into hospital to get his bloods done.  This means that scan time is imminent.

No matter where we are on this cancer journey, scan appointments always always induce…

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Logo Change

We are changing our logo to incorporate the tui which has been our avatar for over a year. We now need to put it in the logo for the sake of consistency across our many platforms. Kevin's professionally designed logo in Cancer Society colours has served us well but was designed to be free floating and does not suit the circles and squares social media demands of logos. Moreover, we want to change the colours to the international burgundy and ivory of head and…

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The May Meeting

More than an AGM

We used to put out a newsletter after each Auckland meeting but now that the website is up and running, it is no longer necessary. 

The meeting on 4 May was devoted mainly to the AGM but we also had time for introductions and discussion as well as a brief talk by Cara McCarthy of Atos Medical. 

We had three lovely new members, Ngaakete, Elizabeth and David. We welcomed back Suzanne and were pleased to see two clinicians at our…

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Wednesday Weekly - 10 May 2017

For anyone diagnosed with a cancer  finding a support network (like this one) is a  first essential.   There will be a plethora of questions and challenges and it is a guarantee someone will have dealt with the same issue – and be prepared to explain how.  The example below, about the mask used during radiotherapy, from the U.K. Macmillan support group  is a good example.  Check on to the link to follow the discussion  through.…

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Wednesday Weekly - 3 May 2017

There’s no disputing cancer treatment is expensive, both from the medical side as well as the individual cost with loss of income ,possible home care and so on.  All the same the decision by  the British national health service to stop funding one of the key anti-cancer drugs (nivolumab-opdivo)  seems a serious…

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