Avoiding Unavoidable Carcinogens

CURE, CURE Winter 2022, Volume 21, Issue 4

We need to learn more about how to potentially lessen toxins' effects on people's lives.

In our everyday lives, we strive to avoid chemicals, air pollution and other toxins that may negatively affect our health. But what if we cannot escape their impact because it is a part of our occupation or even career?

Years later, people exposed to these toxins may have an increased risk for cancers, and the evidence is starting to build up. As more studies are examining the consequences of long-term exposure to toxins, we need to learn more about how to potentially lessen their effects on people’s lives.

In this seasonal issue of CURE®, we speak to a man who started a groundskeeper business in the late ‘70s and who, over a 12-year period, had daily exposure to a common herbicide. This may have played a role in his diagnosis of mantle cell lymphoma in 1991.

We also tell the story of a woman who, as a young child, would wear her father’s jacket to do chores outside. This seems innocent and harmless, but her father worked in the construction industry and his jacket was often coated in white dust with asbestos, which was a result of the compound he mixed to hang drywall.

Twenty-five years later, she received a diagnosis of mesothelioma, right after she gave birth to her baby.

Also in this issue of CURE®, we close out our yearlong series of stories commemorating our 20th anniversary with a feature on pediatric oncology advancements made over the past 20 years.

We speak with doctors who played a critical role in advancing this field and the mother of a child who recently reaped the benefits of those developments, as she was treated for glioblastoma.

We also learn about a woman who was treated for cancer as an adolescent during the early years of our publication, when she was part of a clinical study assessing the timing of chemotherapy treatments.

Other topics addressed in this seasonal issue are “going flat” after a mastectomy for breast cancer, caring for an ostomy pouch, a recent Food and Drug Administration approval in the lung cancer space and the importance of advocacy to increase awareness of certain cancers.

As always, we hope you find our stories inspirational and informative. Thank you for reading.

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