I have interviewed many cancer patients, yet during the interview with Liezl Nell I was brought to tears and I questioned why. Is it because she is only six years younger than me so it hit close to home? Or is it that she is so accepting of the diagnosis as she learnt integral life lessons from it? Both most probably. Nonetheless, her humility touched me. Read her story Keeping life sweet.

Another incredible story is that of The miracle of Khaya; he was given 48 hours to live when diagnosed with leukaemia at three months. Next year, he will be starting Grade 1.

Thank you to Rae van Nieuwenhuizen for her bravery and honesty in sharing how she dealt with radiation dermatitis in Conquering the aftermath.

Revolution in the treatment of chronic lymphoblastic leukaemia, Nuclear medicine, and Neuroendocrine tumours are great educational articles. 

Thank you to all the readers for their support this year. Make the best of this last stretch of 2020.

Hope you enjoy this issue!

Laurelle Williams


Cover photo by Studio Images Photography

Medipost header


Chemo side effects – don’t suffer in silence

Many patients undergoing chemotherapy suffer side effects in silence. Dr Sarita Retief explains that this isn’t how it should be and implores patients to voice their chemo side effects. When seeing patients for their second chemotherapy session, I naturally ask them how the first session was to see if they had any chemo side effects. [...]

Emotional triggers of pain experience

Dr Michelle King expands on how our emotions can increase or decrease our pain experience. A common misconception is that if you’re feeling pain it means you must have hurt yourself. With cancer, pain experience can make you fear that the cancer has spread. However, it’s this very fear that can cause your pain levels to rise.  Your experience [...]

Facts about prostate cancer

Dr Nirasha Chiranjan gives us a rundown on the facts about prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is among the most common cancers in men worldwide, with an estimated 1 600 000 cases and 366 000 deaths annually. The incidence generally rising with age; it is more likely to develop in older men, age 65 and older. [...]

Liezl Nell – Keeping life sweet

Metastatic lung cancer patient, Liezl Nell, shares how baking during lockdown transformed into an online bakery that in turn raised funds to cover some of the co-payments of her treatment. Liezl Nell (31) lives in Randburg, Gauteng with her two older sisters, Louw-Mari and Bernadette. An active life was what Liezl lived. She played several [...]

Lower your risk with CANSA’s Seal of Recognition

It can be a daunting task to know which products are safer and healthier for you and your family. CANSA's Seal of Recognition does the work for you, and when you see the mark on a product, you can be sure it’s free from chemicals of concern and meets the strictest standards for your health. [...]

Lung cancer awareness

Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers globally affecting 2,09 million people in 2018.1 Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer death with 1,76 million deaths worldwide in 2018.1 Smoking and lung cancer People who smoke cigarettes are 15 to 30 times more likely to get lung cancer or die from […]

Neuroendocrine tumours

Dr Rachelle Steyn goes into detail about neuroendocrine tumours and the new support group, NETSAS, that has recently formed. Neuroendocrine tumours, also known as carcinoid cancer, are rare cancers that begin in cells called neuroendocrine cells. These cells are specialised cells that secrete hormones in our bodies to keep them working normally.  Neuroendocrine cells are present throughout [...]

Nuclear medicine in oncology

Dr Lizette Louw educates us about nuclear medicine, a molecular imaging and therapy technique, and its use in oncology. What is nuclear medicine? Nuclear medicine is a specialised area of medical imaging that uses small amounts of radioactivity to examine organ function. The radioactive atom is linked to a specific molecule, depending on which organ system will [...]

Rae van Nieuwenhuizen – Conquering the aftermath

Cervical cancer survivor, Rae van Nieuwenhuizen, shares how she dealt with radiation dermatitis. Rae van Nieuwenhuizen (55) lives in Hillcrest, Kwa-Zulu Natal with her husband. They have two adult children.  Stage 2B cervical cancer I was diagnosed in October 2016 with Stage 2B cervical cancer at age 51. The tumour I had was roughly 5x4x2cm in size and […]

Revolution in treatment of chronic lymphoblastic leukaemia

Dr Philippa Ashmore tells us how chronic lymphoblastic leukaemia is now managed with increased emphasis on personalised and chemotherapy-free treatments. Chronic lymphoblastic leukaemia (CLL) is the most common leukaemia in the western world. This blood/bone marrow cancer is most often seen in older patients, although younger patients can be affected, with a higher rate in men [...]

The miracle of Khaya

Judith Mgobhozi shares the incredible story of of her son, Khayalethu,who was given 48 hours to live when he was diagnosed with leukaemia at three months. Today Khaya is a strong and upbeat six-year-old. Khayalethu Makhaye (6) lives in, Umkomaas, Kwa-Zulu Natal with his mother, Judith, and his baby sister, Ziyana. Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia Khaya was [...]

The Prostate Cancer Foundation

We hear how the Prostate Cancer Foundation came about and the success of their latest Suit Up September campaign. SA prostate cancer stats Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in South Africa (excluding non-melanoma skin cancer).  If prostate cancer is detected in the early stages, the chance of survival after five years […]

Your A-Z of oncology - an annual comprehensive directory.

cover 2021 BIG C

The lifestyle publication for breast cancer survivors.

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Word For Word Media are the publishers of Oncology Buddies, Buddies For Life and the 2021 BIG C SURVIVOR’S GUIDE – your annual comprehensive directory of all the information that you, the patient and/or family, seek out. It is the only of its kind in South Africa.