Tuesday, October 26, 2004

They're getting tired, sick and tired

A touch of pink

Okay, not to get all grrrrl-ish, but I'm posting this picture to remind anyone who happens upon this blog that there are still a few days left in Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I'm not going to write a diatribe about the need to raise breast cancer awareness, etc, though. I think there is a different message to highlight.

Breast cancer rivals AIDS in terms of star power and lobbying to get increased funding around research and treatment development. Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer among women, but if you look across genders, there are actually just as many, if not more, patients with some other types of cancers that receive nowhere near the same funding. Now, we can debate the merits of spending money so intensely on breast cancer research, but what can't be debated is the survival benefits that have been seen over the last ten years. Women with breast cancer are seeing a truly remarkable increase in remission and overall life expectancy.

It is no small feat. Breast cancer is not particularly easier to treat than other types of cancers. But a solid, dedicated patient advocacy has made this disease nearly chronic in nature. And that is pretty amazing.

On another note, this type of thing annoys me. Why? Because the title link in Yahoo- Researchers discover diabetes gene- could be so misleading. First of all, it's unlikely that there is one diabetes gene. Secondly, you read on to the first sentence of the actual article and you get:
"Researchers at Wake Forest University have discovered a gene that could cause up to 20 percent of Type II diabetes"

I don't know why things like that annoy me so. Perhaps it's because it's demeaning and undermines how complex all of this work really is. Truly understanding how diabetes works and how to treat it are mammoth challenges. I am suddenly reminded of a rage episode of mine after seeing the first 30 minutes of Medicine Man featuring Sean Connery making a complete and utter mockery of Natural Products Chemistry.

No comments: