Earlier this year, the White House introduced a Cancer Moonshot Initiative, a new program designed to search for a cure for cancer. In his State of the Union Address in January, President Obama discussed the new initiative, asking for nearly $1 billion of extra spending over the next couple of years. Cancer centers, advocacy groups, government agencies, and companies are all working together to coordinate efforts to dismantle the barriers that often slow this process down. Vice President Joe Biden is at the helm of the initiative – his 46-year-old son having died last year due to brain cancer.
MCA Staff Writers
Presenting Up-to-Date Mesothelioma Topics
In November 2012, James Dunbar “Dun” Stockwell went to the doctor’s office for a routine physical exam. When the doctor took an x-ray, however, he discovered Dun had a collapsed lung. The discovery led to multiple surgeries and the need to return to the hospital every few months due to pleural effusion (buildup of fluid in the lungs).
Recent developments on the horizon regarding treatment for mesothelioma hold promise for future patients. There could soon be another medication introduced as a first-line treatment chemtherapy option. Rather than reinvent the treatment wheel, this particular drug would compound the effects of current chemotherapy treatments, to the benefit of many mesothelioma patients.
In addition to the physical, mental, and emotional impacts of surviving cancer, there is also a major impact on the interpersonal relationships of a cancer survivor. Many of the various role and relationship changes can begin even before diagnosis, affecting everyone that a cancer patient interacts with and the social situations in which they find themselves. After diagnosis and treatment, there are other issues to be dealt with, which can have an effect on the survivor’s role in the family and social circles.
This morning, President Obama signed the historic Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, potentially creating a path to a full ban on asbestos – and other toxic chemicals – in the United States.
Overcoming cancer is a great feat. But the effects of treatment and recovery can often linger for a long time afterward. Treatment itself can lead to other physical problems, such as causing chemical imbalances or leaving the immune system susceptible to other illnesses.
The primary risk factor for mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos. However, genetic factors also can play a part in determining who develops the disease.
These days many people will get cancer simply by living long enough, as the disease manifests in a third of the population in one of its many forms. As of 2014, cancer drugs with the FDA's blessing cost more than $120,000 annually – and according to a recent CBS News report, that cost increased 11.5 percent last year. Taking into consideration that the median gross income for American households is $52,000, along with the fact that insurance companies often ask families to pay upward to 30 percent of the total cost of cancer treatment, the bottom line is that cancer treatments are becoming much too costly for the average patient.