Battling And Beating Cancer – Leukemia and Leukemia Research With Dr Le Beau

February 11, 2012 by  
Filed under CANCER, VIDEO

September is the month to fight childhood cancer

September 16, 2010 by  
Filed under CANCER

September is an important month in our battle against cancer. Several cancer awareness campaigns are observed this month.

Childhood Cancer Month

September is also a month dedicated to increase awareness of childhood cancer which kills more than 10,000 American children under the age of 15 each year. September 13 was designated as “National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day.” One of the major advocates for childhood cancer awareness is none other than Hillary Rodham Clinton, former first lady and senator, mother and current US Secretary of State. She says:

“We have made tremendous strides in the fight against childhood cancer, but far too many children still suffer and lose their lives to this illness. The more we know as a nation the better able we will be to prevent and treat the disease and help those who are battling and surviving pediatric cancers.  National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day is an opportunity to reach out to all Americans with the facts about childhood cancer, and this day will be an important symbol of our commitment on all days to find a cure.”

The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute presents in its website stories of victims and survivors of childhood cancer.

The National Cancer Institute cites the following as the most common childhood cancers:

  • Leukemias, especially acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
  • Common solid tumors, such as brain tumors (e.g., gliomas and medulloblastomas),
  • Less common solid tumors such as neuroblastomas, Wilms tumors, and sarcomas such as rhabdomyosarcoma and osteosarcoma)

Leukemias and brain cancer as well as cancers of the nervous system account for more than half of all childhood cancers. The causes of childhood cancers are still unknown.

The Association of Cancer Online Resources (ACOR) gives a list of early signs of childhood cancer:

Continued, unexplained weight loss
Headaches, often with early morning vomiting
Increased swelling or persistent pain in bones, joints, back, or legs
Lump or mass, especially in the abdomen, neck, chest, pelvis, or armpits
Development of excessive bruising, bleeding, or rash
Constant infections
whitish color behind the pupil
Nausea which persists or vomiting without nausea
Constant tiredness or noticeable paleness
Eye or vision changes which occur suddenly and persist
Recurrent or persistent fevers of unknown origin

Other cancer awareness observances this month are:

  • Leukemia & Lymphoma Awareness Month, sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). LLS is currently campaigning for more sponsors to support the National Blood Cancer Awareness Month Resolution to be submitted to the US Congress. Check out how you can help. Leukemia and lymphoma fall under the category of blood cancers and are also common childhood cancers.
  • Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, sponsored by the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition (NOCC)
  • Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, sponsored by Zero, the project to end prostate cancer.

Other infos on childhood cancer are available at 

Grape seed extracts may treat leukemia

January 12, 2009 by  
Filed under CANCER

Blood cancers like leukemia, myeloma and lymphoma caused about 54,000 deaths in 2006 alone, making these cancers the fourth leading deadly cancer in the US. The search for cure for these cancers has lead scientists to look at natural products from fruits and vegetables that may potentially prevent or treat these deadly diseases.

The recent discovery by the researchers from the University of Kentucky showed that natural extract from grape seeds make laboratory leukemia cells commit suicide in the process they call “apoptosis”. Grape seed extract have already been reported to have an effect on laboratory cancer cells inclduing breast, skin, lung, colon and prostate cancer cells. This is the first time to test this grape extract on hematological cancers.

The research came about when Dr. Xianglin Shi, a professor in the Graduate Center for Toxicology at the University of Kentucky and his colleagues discovered that apple peel extract contains proanthocyanidins that helps prevent cancer development. These compounds have antioxidant activity and can cause cancer cells to commit suicide. These findings plus previous reports on the effects of grape seed extracts breast tumors in rats and skin tumors inspired Shi and colleagues to look at the effects of grape seed extracts on leukemia cells. Their research showed that 76% of the laboratory leukemia cells died after being exposed to the grape seed extract for 24 hours. They found that the extract activates JNK, a protein that triggers the cell to commit suicide. What makes it more interesting is that the extract only attacks the cancer cells and leaves the normal cells alone. They still, however, cannot explain the mechanisms behind the anti-cancer properties of grade seed extracts.

“These results could have implications for the incorporation of agents such as grape seed extract into prevention or treatment of hematological malignancies and possibly other cancers,” said Dr. Shi. He adds, however, that the research is not far enough along to suggest that people should eat grapes, grape seeds, or grape skin in excess to stave off cancer. “This is very promising research, but it is too early to say this is chemo-protective.”

The findings are published in the January issue of Clinical Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Even if the anti-cancer properties of grape seeds still have to be researched further, there is no doubt as to the benefits of eating fresh fruit such as grapes. Previous studies have shown that grapes have many other health benefits. Red grapes, for example, contain the antioxidants resveratrol, melatonin, and flavonoids which explains the cardioprotective properties of red wine.

Photo credit: stock.xchng

Child Leukemia – Generalities, Symptoms and Treatment

March 9, 2007 by  
Filed under CANCER

By Groshan Fabiola

Leukemia interferes with the body’s production of white blood cells. These cells are supposed to fight infections with viruses or bacteria, and when someone has leukemia, they are defective and their number is largely increased, but because they are not fulfilling their role any more, although their number can increase ten times the body’s defense system is seriously weakened and any infection can be very dangerous.

Unfortunately leukemia can affect young children too, and the number of child leukemia cases keeps increasing. There are two types of leukemia – acute leukemia – a cancer that develops and evolves very fast and it affects all the white blood cells, and chronic leukemia – it develops slower and healthy white blood cells can still be found.

More than 95% of the child leukemia cases are acute leukemia. Acute leukemia can also be divided into acute acute myelogenous leukemia and lymphocytic leukemia acute myelogenous leukemia because there are two types of blood cells, and each type of leukemia affects a different kind of blood cells. More than half of the children with leukemia have acute lymphocytic leukemia.

The symptoms of acute leukemia start with fever, and continue with many infections, because the child is weak against any damaging foreign microorganisms. When the disease advances the child becomes anemic and begins to have a pale color. He will always feel a sensation of weakness and fatigue which will prevent him from playing outdoors. All leukemia patients, including children can be bruised very easy, and the often bleed for no reason. When bleeding occurs it cannot be stopped for a long time because leukemia affects the cells responsible for healing wounds.

If the illness is not discovered and it is left untreated it starts spreading through the body and it can reach the brain, affecting some of the senses and causing headaches.

In order to diagnose child leukemia the child must go through a series of special tests. If the result is positive then therapy must begin as soon as possible. First some new tests must be performed to determine what kind of therapy works best. In most cases chemotherapy is used because it has the highest survival rate. Chemotherapy is also accompanied by drugs. The purpose of the therapy is to heal the bone marrow, the organ that produces the defective blood cells and to kill all the malfunctioning cells from the body. If the therapy is successful it must still be continued because the cancer can re-appear. In some more severe cases a bone marrow transplant is needed.

The good news is that therapy is getting better and better and most of the children survive this illness, but the survival rate depends on how far the cancer has advanced and on what form of it the child has.

For more resources on different leukemia related issues like chronic leukemia, acute leukemia and many more visit .

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New test predicts blood cancer’s sensitivity to experimental cancer drug

January 22, 2007 by  
Filed under CANCER

A test developed by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute scientists is the first to identify which malignant blood cells are highly vulnerable to a promising type of experimental drugs that unleash pent-up “cell suicide” factors to destroy the cancer.

(Read the rest of this article …)


December 12, 2006 by  
Filed under CANCER

By Steve John Cowan

All of the different “types” of cancer can be deadly, that’s a given. Even though survival rates tend to be much higher nowadays than they were perhaps twenty years ago, the fact is that a diagnosis of cancer can still be a death sentence and this is especially so when it affects the most vital components of the body.

One such type of cancer that falls into this category is cancer of the blood, more commonly known as leukemia. Many people may not think of it this way, but, in simple terms, blood is the most important tissue of the body.

It is effectively the conduit that connects all the other organs and tissues of the body together, carrying and supplying oxygen and other vital elements to even the remotest parts of the body. Bloods importance to the body cannot be over estimated.

So, the most dangerous feature of leukemia is that is attacks the blood which then has access to all of the bodies other organs, including the all brain, heart, kidneys and liver. Thus, the cancerous cells are spread throughout the body by the very blood that is normally the key to good health, in a leukemia sufferer.

To take this analogy one stage further, blood cancer specifically targets the leukocytes or the “white blood corpuscles” of the blood, which are the very ones that usually protect the body from external infections. Thus, the body’s immunity from, or resistance to, external infections is dramatically reduced in a leukemia sufferer. Such blood cancer causes the body to produce infected and abnormal cells that hinder the function of blood (i.e. the transport of oxygen around the body) rather than helping it.

It is common for a leukemia sufferer to become anemic, and to lose weight, because the cancerous cells are unable to adequately the hemoglobin, the body’s chief source of iron.

As a consequence, the blood cancer patient tends to lose all vitality and energy, and becomes especially vulnerable, because the infected blood tends to cause the brain to start to malfunction to some extent.

Exposure to raised levels of radiation is a prime proven cause of leukemia. Likewise, children born with Downs Syndrome have a raised probability of suffering blood cancer, and benzene (an industrial hydro-carbon) is also cited as a cause.

However, the slightly better news is that the abnormal cells are easily detected under the microscope, and a timely bone marrow examination should confirm these microscopic tests.

Chemotherapy, whilst it can be extremely painful, is nevertheless still the most effective method of killing the cancerous cells, although any patient undergoing such treatment should be prepared to have to ingest an unholy alliance of chemicals that he (or she) needs to take.

Similarly, radiotherapy can be effective also, with various unpleasant side effects, such as hair loss and poor skin quality whilst undergoing treatment.

Although it is undoubtedly one of the most deadly forms of cancer, leukemia is nevertheless treatable and indeed curable, and extensive research into more effective treatment is a constantly ongoing fact.

Methods like a bone marrow transplant, which may be required at a later stage, are also effective in treating the patient.

Steve Cowan is an Asia based businessman and writer. Get two free reports dealing with Self Help and Natural Treatments Cancer at

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The Pluck Factor

December 3, 2006 by  
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By Carolina Fernandez

Plucky (pluk’e) adj. Brave and spirited; courageous.

Have you ever noticed how few people possess radiating energy? How eyes lack sparkle and how few real smiles there are out there? How almost no one looks you in the eyes when you talk or how few people have truly gracious social skills? One thing that never ceases to amaze me is the lack of charisma or magnetism or exuberance among people everywhere!

So when I met Lorraine and Cam, I was immediately drawn to their energy. To their lit-up eyes, frequent laughter and bubbly personalities. Now they’re not particularly bubbly as in “effervescent.” No, they are actually more on the subdued side. But when one talks to them, their eyes twinkle. They smile when they talk. They maintain fabulous eye contact. Good upbringing? Perhaps. I’ve met both of their parents, even though one set lives in Scotland and the other in England (and we live up here in Connecticut in New England) and they are, indeed, darling people.

It’s even more amazing that we were drawn to each other with laughter and happy-talk considering the common thread that brought us together in the first place: leukemia. Their sixteen-month-old daughter, Katie, was diagnosed just before our seventeen-year-old son, Nick, was. Both children are treated by the same team of doctors. We met, for the first time, in the west wing of Yale’s Children’s Hospital. All of us were scared and admittedly, in a rather sad state.

Yet we continued, throughout treatments for our kids, to help each other get through them. I chased Katie around the chemo clinic when Lorraine and Cam were simply too worn out to do so, or held her when she needed a finger-stick and kicked the nurses too hard to get it done; we read stories together and sometimes she let me rock her to sleep. We colored, watched Dora the Explorer and played with puzzles. Cam engaged Nick in talk or made coffee and bagel runs for all of us. Lorraine kept me company and together, we helped keep each other’s spirits high.

They are back at the hospital, this time at Sloan Kettering, as Katie has undergone a bone marrow transplant this past week. It required weeks of pre-transplant consultations, tests, radiation and chemo. It also required Lorraine and Cam to temporarily set up house in New York City, in a rental apartment a couple blocks from Katie’s hospital room.

Some of us might complain about the difficulty of this situation. About lack of personal time, poor hospital food for weeks on end. Of watching our own children endure rigorous testing and annoying, seemingly endless blood work. Of the unfairness of the circumstances.

But not Lorraine and Cam. They maintain a positive attitude and continue to deal with every little detail with spunky, feisty attitude. They possess an enormously high “Pluck Factor.” They have a “to-heck-with-you-attitude” when people get in their way. They trudge through their days with laughter and verve. Hospital food the pits? No worries. Lorraine brings to Katie’s hospital room a crock pot along with bags full of groceries. When nurses wander in from the aroma of a slow-cooking roast and firmly let her know that she’s breaking all the rules, she tells them that she’s not dealing with the crummy food they’re trying to serve her. When little Katie does something adorable, Lorraine sends out an email blast for all of us to enjoy the moment. During the actual transplant, a video was made and we all got to witness closely (albeit from a distance) what it was really like. The video clips were amazing…..And afterwards? She and Cam celebrated with champagne and scrumptious food at a local French bistro.

Forget sad faces and going along with the ho-hum motions that most people simply accept as part of the circumstances. Lorraine and Cam have decided to maintain a spirit of resolve and a completely positive mental attitude in order to get through these days with grace. They let no one, and nothing, stand in their way. Katie’s well-being is their over-riding concern, and all of their efforts are directed to that end.

Strong-minded people serve as tremendous inspirations for me. When life throws you a curve ball, a U-turn, a disappointment or an unpleasant surprise, the outcome will oftentimes be greatly dependent on the way in which you handle yourself during those times. It takes practically no strength of character to be charming and adorable when everything is going your way. It’s when things get dicey that your true character reveals itself. And that’s when you need a high Pluck Factor. When you need to be courageous, to turn the ordeal into a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. To show your true colors, and your grit and the stuff of which you are made.

Many readers of this Newsletter are going through ordeals at this very moment. I know so because you write and tell me of them, and my heart goes out to each and every one of you. I hope this letter finds you determined to increase the Pluck Factor by just a little bit. To hold your head up high and courageously get through these days as have my dear friends Lorraine and Cam. You will serve as wonderful role models for someone else who, one day, will need to exhibit a high dose of pluck, too.

Carolina Fernandez earned an M.B.A. and worked in investment banking and as a stockbroker before coming home to work as a wife and mother of four. She totally re-invented herself along the way. Strong convictions were born about the role of the arts in child development; ten years of homeschooling and raising four kids provide fertile soil for devising creative parenting strategies. These are played out in ROCKET MOM! 7 Strategies To Blast You Into Brilliance. It is widely available online, in bookstores or through 888-476-2493. She writes extensively for a variety of parenting resources and teaches other moms via seminars, workshops, keynotes and monthly meetings of the ROCKET MOM SOCIETY, a sisterhood group she launched to “encourage, equip and empower moms for excellence.” Please visit

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Report: Cancer rates high for WTC workers

June 11, 2006 by  
Filed under CANCER

NEW YORK, NY, United States (UPI) — Nearly 300 rescue and recovery workers from the World Trade Center site have been diagnosed with cancer since Sept. 11, 2001, the New York Post reports.

Blood-cell cancers such as leukemia, lymphoma and Hodgkin`s disease are being reported at a much higher rate than normal from World Trade Center rescue workers, attorney David Worby told the Post.

Doctors say these cancers typically strike three to five years after exposure to toxins such as benzene, which was widespread at the Trade Center site due to burning jet fuel, the newspaper said.

Worby`s law firm Worby, Groner, Edelman, & Napoli, has filed a class-action lawsuit with 8,000 participants.

Dr. Robin Herbert of Mount Sinai Hospital would not say the cancers are directly related to the Sept. 11 terror attacks, but told the Post that there have been several ‘red flags.’

Thirty-three workers have died of cancer since the attacks, the newspaper said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

MORE: Washington Times

MORE: 9-11 Research

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.