Letters from CURE readers.
I applaud CURE for recognizing myeloprolific diseases as neoplasms, or forms of cancer. Although these conditions are relatively rare, it is time that they are recognized, and your Patient’s Guide to Myeloproliferative Neoplasms (pdf) did a good job of that. I have shared many articles from CURE with close friends and acquaintances over the years, and rest assured, this publication has saved many lives by educating patients about their diseases.
Bill Sharpton, OD
The “Technical Touch” article was interesting. I think that the key point any person should consider is the surgeon. My urologist had performed about 150 traditional surgeries, and I found the surgeon who trained him at the University of New Mexico who had done over 600 procedures, so I was able to choose the master, not the student. Inasmuch as [prostate cancer] is normally a slow-moving type of cancer, a person does not need to rush to a solution.
Las Cruces, N.M.
I am a pancreatic cancer survivor of six years and counting. Thank you for the very informative article regarding this cancer (“Changing Course”). I especially liked the diagram of the Whipple procedure—it helps me explain to everyone exactly what the procedure is. And this was the first issue since I have been receiving the magazine that fully addressed pancreatic cancer and some of the issues survivors have.
Sterling Heights, Mich.
I worked 35-plus years for the Social Security Administration (SSA) and retired in 2013. I specialized in returning to work after receiving a SSA disability-based benefit. The information in the Special Report on Paying for Cancer Care (issue) is misleading. Beneficiaries on the SSA disability rolls can and do return to work full-time, and there are many work incentives and employment support programs in SSA that make it possible for an individual to maintain cash benefits and/or Medicare and Medicaid.
Writer Roxanne Nelson responds: It was beyond the scope of the article to delve into SSA disability in detail. It is a complex subject, with many programs, requirements, limitations on earnings, etc. The disability discussion was geared to a cancer patient who is unable to stay on the job due to illness or treatment, and it presented options from a legal expert in the field. The expert pointed out that while you may be able to collect SSA benefits if you cannot work due to cancer, once you are well enough to return to your full-time job you cannot continue to collect disability income. The comments were not meant to be an exhaustive explanation of SSA benefits and programs.