I guess the biggest cancer news this week is the announcement that Apple CEO Steve Jobs is taking a leave of absence for health reasons. Jobs was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and had surgery in 2004. He also underwent liver transplant in 2009. Both procedures were performed in the US. The latest news according to CNN’s Fortune is that he also secretly underwent “a special form of hormone-delivered radiotherapy to treat neuroendocrine cancer”, in Basel, Switzerland in 2009. The said treatment is currently not available in the US. Currently, there are many speculations about the latest leave of absence of the Apple chief. Rumors about organ rejection and return to Switzerland abound. Fortune continues to write:
A neuroendocrine cancer expert at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics said Monday that recent studies show that “survival rates are improving” due to better treatment. At the time Jobs’s cancer was originally diagnosed in 2004, according to Dr. Thor Halfdanarson, the five-year survival rate for metastatic disease was thought to be less than 20%. Today “the prognosis is getting better,” with the five-year survival rate at 55% to 57%, he said, according to one recent study.
Wherever he is, we wish Steve Jobs all the best.
Kylie Minogue was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent surgery and chemotherapy in 2005. As of October 2010, Minogue was still undergoing cancer treatment and admitted to be suffering from severe side effects that included “extreme sickness and headaches.” The Australian pop start admits “she often cries over her ongoing cancer treatment” and that the side effects “left her distraught and despondent.” There were times when Minogue felt like giving up and really looked forward to the end of treatment in 2011.
“I’ll finish early next year and that will be amazing, but I’ve also heard you can feel quite insecure when you first come off it because you have relied on this medication for so long. It’s going to be a big adjustment.”
Good luck, Kylie!
Another celebrity who has been battling cancer is actor Michael Douglas. Douglas was diagnosed with throat cancer last year and underwent intensive chemo- and radiotherapy. In a recent interview on NBC, the actor happily reported that his cancer is gone. According to Douglas on his first interview since starting cancer treatment:
“I think the odds are with the tumor gone and what I know about this particular type of cancer that I’ve got it beat… I have to check out on a monthly basis now to maintain. I guess there’s not a total euphoria. I’ll probably take a couple of months of getting checked out. But it’s been a wild six-month ride.”
We are so happy for you, Michael. Keep it up.
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