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Common Ground

May 23, 2018

Speak, Learn, Participate: Three Verbs That Can Change Your Life With Cancer

(The first in a two-post blog series)

Feeling unsure about aspects of your cancer treatment, but are afraid to speak up? Studies show if you learn to self-advocate, you’ll have a better quality of life in all phases of treatment and beyond.


You may find you take on a number of roles as you play out your life with cancer. Some days you are a warrior—Thor, wielding his hammer of protection and healing. At other times, you’re a stray dog—frightened and hiding under the porch. When it comes to treatment and managing the disease, try casting yourself as the whitewater rafting guide. In this role, you’re not alone in the...

May 9, 2018

Learning to sail your own ship

Author Anthony J. D’Angelo wrote, “In your thirst for knowledge, be sure not to drown in all the information.” No doubt cancer patients know this feeling all too well. Where exactly is that safe harbor between too much information and not enough?

To understand patients’ health information needs, researchers conducted narrative interviews with 127 people with breast, prostate or colorectal cancer and published their findings in BMJ Open. They discovered that in addition to providing patients with knowledge, information seeking gave them a much-needed sense of control. With the necessary information, patients felt less fearful and more confident about their treat...

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