Dec 10, 2014 Laurelle Williams

Testicular cancer is a highly treatable, usually curable, cancer that most often develops in young and middle-aged men usually between the ages of 20 to 35 years old. Approximately 8500 new cases of testicular cancer occur in the US each year, of which less than 5% will be fatal. The testicles are the male sex glands that produce testosterone and sperm. Germ cells within the testicles produce immature sperm that travel through a network of tiny tubes and larger tubes into the epididymis, where the sperm mature and are stored. Almost all testicular cancers start in the germ cells. The…

Dec 10, 2014 Laurelle Williams

If anyone understands the importance of regularly having a cancer check-up, it’s Sue Behrens. In November last year Sue got devastating news: her son, Brandan, had been diagnosed with testicular cancer. He was 24 years old, and a participant in Movember – a global movement which aims to “Change the Face of Men’s Health” by creating awareness and raising funds for survivorship and research for prostate and testicular cancer programmes implemented by The Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA). Sue explained that Brandan had a vague feeling of un-wellness for several months prior to his diagnosis. “Yet, despite regular blood…

Dec 10, 2014 Laurelle Williams

Torsten Koehler is a ballsy testicular cancer survivor who this year has officially been cancer free for 19 years. He was born and raised in Windhoek, Namibia. At the age of 30, Torsten was diagnosed with testicular cancer whilst educating young teenagers about ‘sex education’ at a school. “I discovered a change in my testicles and was worried, so I went to the doctor. The diagnosis was cancer. I was lucky since they could operate right away. After receiving chemo, I was saved from death.” Yet then the real fight for life started as Torsten lost his passion for living…

Dec 10, 2014 Laurelle Williams

The cancers that affect children are generally unique to those that affect adults and the incidence of childhood cancer is 150 in a million worldwide. In South Africa, one in 600 children are affected by cancer before the age of 16 – sadly, less than half of the children are diagnosed early enough and reach a treatment centre in time. According to Silvia Craucamp, Nurse Clinical Officer and Training Coordinator for Children’s Haematology Oncology Clinics (CHOC) in Gauteng, many children are diagnosed too late with an advanced stage of cancer for the treatment to have much chance of success and…

Dec 10, 2013 Laurelle Williams

Invasive cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers found in women and in developing countries it remains the second most common cause of cancer death in women. It is estimated that there are more than 500 000 new cases of cervical cancer every year, with in excess of 80% in developing countries like South Africa. In addition to these statistics, there are also a significant amount of women who develop premalignant cervical changes which can progress to cancer without appropriate screening and management. The central cause of cervix cancer is the Human Papiloma Virus (HPV), a sexually transmitted virus, which is responsible for 99% of…

Dec 10, 2013 Laurelle Williams

Colon cancer is most commonly a disease in older patients with the vast majority of cases occurring after the age of 50, although there is an increasing number of younger patients who are being diagnosed. Due to the age specific incidence of bowel cancer, it is associated with numerous challenges. Globally, colorectal (bowel) cancer is the third most diagnosed cancer in males and the second in females, with over 1.2 million new cases and 608 700 deaths estimated to have occurred in 2008. The highest incidence rates are in Australia and New Zealand, Europe and North America, and the lowest…

Dec 10, 2013 Laurelle Williams

Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer occurring in men. One in six men can expect to receive a diagnosis of Prostate cancer within their lifetime. However, with a cancer-specific five year survival rate approaching 100% death from prostate cancer is actually not common. Most men with Prostate cancer actually die from other causes such as heart disease or old age. Prostate cancer has one of the strongest relationships between age and any human malignancy. Clinically diagnosed prostate cancer rarely occurs before the age of 40, but the incidence rises rapidly thereafter. The risk of prostate cancer is increased approximately…

Dec 10, 2013 Laurelle Williams

The South African Children’s Tumour Registry reports that childhood cancer is relatively rare, representing about 1% of cancers in the total population. In South Africa, one in 600 children are affected by cancer before the age of 16. The encouraging news is that if diagnosed early, 70-85% of children can be cured. “Childhood cancer is generally curable and progress towards curing it has been made in developed countries where the overall survival rate for some common malignant tumours is about 80%. Early detection can save lives. And knowing the early warning signs can save your child’s life,” says founder of…

Dec 10, 2013 Laurelle Williams

Experts say that men could benefit greatly by being alert to certain cancer symptoms. It only requires a trip to the doctor’s office sooner, rather than later. But when it comes to scheduling doctor visits, men are notorious foot-draggers. In fact, some men would never go to the doctor if it weren’t for the women in their lives. Linda Greeff, founder of People Living with Cancer and Cancer Buddies, comments that routine preventive care can diagnose cancer and other diseases in their early stages. When cancer is found early enough, there are more options for treatment. This means that there…