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Interested in speaking at public schools?

ddaniel28
Posts: 1
Joined: Oct 2010

Hello all. I am searching for a young lung cancer survivor (from smoking) to speak at a few elementary and high schools in my community. I am located in Reway, California. If anyone is intereted please email me. A grant will cover your travel expenses and time. Thank you! God bless.

stayingcalm's picture
stayingcalm
Posts: 656
Joined: Feb 2007

16 - 20% of all new lung cancers are in never-smokers. Do you realize you are fostering the idea that lung cancer is a smoker's disease? Please don't teach our children that.
stayingcalm

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

I have never disagreed with you in the past, deb, but I must point out that if your statistic is correct, it remains true that 80-84% of lung cancers derive from smoking.

That is not a bad place to start in prevention efforts, then.

Cut out the smoking and you cut out a large piece of the lung cancer incidence.

Take care, my friend,

Joe

cabbott
Posts: 1048
Joined: Aug 2006

Why not a talk with both ways of getting lung cancer represented? I have heard for years the stat that between 8 out of 10 or 9 out of 10 folks get lung cancer by smoking. It made such an impression that I was "sure" cigarette smoking caused cancer and I couldn't possibly get it because I didn't smoke. But I most certainly did get cancer and not once but twice (not mets either! I have a diagnosis of both stage 1 breast cancer and stage 1 lung cancer). I'm not the only one that found out after I was diagnosed that all cancer is genetic at the cellular level. Cigarettes cause a lot of genetic damage and increase your risk of getting cancer. The math is pretty clear, especially in the case of lung cancer,head and neck cancer, and some of the other cancers where the tobacco product touches the cancer site in question. But the cancer is still genetic at the cellular level. Smokers don't deserve to have lung cancer. We all need a cure that works. That cure won't make tobacco use okay because it still will cause a lot of other health and hygiene problems. Most kids won't take up tobacco use because it makes their breath, hair and clothes stink and it will still do that even if lung cancer becomes extinct. So present the truth and explain the science as well as the math. And push for good health for everyone, including folks that got hooked on cigarettes and found out the hard way the real cost of smoking.

Dan620
Posts: 220
Joined: Dec 2009

Former smoker, i quit smoking 21 years ago dx with 2 1/2 years ago. When i started this habit about 55 years ago they did not know it caused cancer they only said it would stunt your growth and that sacred no-one, Cost of a pack 23 cents, today over 5 dollars and still people get hooked on this very hard habit to quit. Quiting smoking was VERY hard to do. It really ticks me off when i see young people smoking. Well so much for venting..... Stay well ... Dan

stayingcalm's picture
stayingcalm
Posts: 656
Joined: Feb 2007

How about over $10 per pack! ;-) At least, here in the NY suburbs. I'm so glad I quit, I can't imagine trying to come up with $20/per day ($600/month!) to feed that habit.

stayingcalm's picture
stayingcalm
Posts: 656
Joined: Feb 2007

My feeling is that far too many people look at those who smoked and feel they deserved what they got because they smoked. This carries over into the fact that lung cancer gets only a fraction of the research funding that other cancers get, despite the fact that there are 4 times as many deaths from lung cancer as from breast cancer, 3 times as many as colorectal, etc. The disparity is mainly attributable to the stigma that goes with lung cancer - who wants to fund something that they believe is self-inflicted?

Much of the small funding slice lung cancer gets has gone to anti-smoking campaigns and educational efforts in the schools. But...lung cancer can happen to anyone, including people who never smoked. Everywhere you look there's another carcinogen - PCBs in the river fish, radon from our basements, asbestos from house construction and auto parts, arsenic from weed-killers, benzene in dry-cleaners and new carpeting, x-rays and CT scans, chemicals sprayed on our food, etc.. I personally worked in an autoparts store for ten years, often right next to the shop in the back where they ground brake shoes - who's to say that didn't have a part in my cancer? Some of that 80 - 84% is probably environmentally caused, considering the amount of carcinogens we encounter in our lifetimes.

I want to see our kids (mine are way past that; one smokes, the other won't go near it) taught that smoking is one of the things that can cause cancer, but not that it is the cause. There are also plenty of people who smoke who will never get cancer, although I wouldn't want to stress that in front of a child, lest they think that meant smoking is ok!

(hope I made sense, this every-day Tarceva business is wiping me out)
Deb

NayPaul's picture
NayPaul
Posts: 230
Joined: Oct 2010

I have VERY mixed feelings on this. My mother was dx with breast cancer 5 yrs ago this coming December. Prior to that I had an aunt dx with breast cancer ten years ago. I have been involved in countless walks.

Mom died this summer in July... and we spent a lot of time getting family together. Early this summer my wife developed a cough. Since she is prone to allergies, we did not think much of it.

After a few weeks it was still there. Because we use a lot of humor, one night she jokingly made the comment, that "You all think this is nothing, but what if I have cancer or somthing?" We bothed laughed, and talked about 80-90 percent of lung cancer occuring in smokers, and we have had our home tested for radon, so it would be rare indeed.

In early August, two weeks after mom had died, my wife had a corrible coughing spasm. She conincidentally went to the dr. for her a gyno exam. He asked her again if she smoked etc. He prescribed anti-biotics. Two weeks later, she still had the cough, but waited until her routine physical to go in. At that time the doctor became concerned.

Now, when we tell people she has lung cancer, ALWAYS, the first QUESTION they ask, is if she smokes. Or they might say, "Oh, I did not know she smoked."

While I agree that MANY, MANY, illnesses and diseases can be reduced by not smoking, I also believe there is a tendency to miss or dismiss certain illnesses because one does not smoke.

There is a huge stigma with lung cancer.... Quite honestly, MOST people have poor eating, exercise and other habits that would also go a long way at reducing many illnesses... including cancers. I bet most Americans, don't eat enough green leafy veges, exercise an hour a day, take a multi-vitamin, eat too much saturated fat and sugars, etc. Becuase of it is so prevalent, we are much quicker to dismiss their cancers as bad luck instead of lifestyle choices.

So again, I'm very mixed. TWO months ago, I would have totally agreed with the concept of bringing in young lung cancer survivors, but now, not so much.

groundhog
Posts: 44
Joined: Jun 2010

To teach children not to smoke is a parents responsibility. To exploit a former smoker, cancer survivor, even for the benefit of others, is questionable. Are we teaching children that if you smoke you get cancer? Are we teaching children that if they smoke they can survive cancer?? Watch what you teach, reading, writing, and arithmatic are admirable, especially for younger children. I'm sorry I have to question ddaniel28's credibility, I see it's his first post on the site. I also do not see where ddaniel28 is a cancer survivor or care giver. I also have to question whether a paid speaker in public schools is allowed even in California schools. Just sounds a bit too much like someone is benefiting from this themselves. I also do not know of any lung cancer proven to be from smoking, even mine. Sorry, just the way I see it.

medi_2's picture
medi_2
Posts: 510
Joined: Aug 2009

I believe this guy is working from a grant so the grant would pay the speaker, not the school. Or the school could pay the speaker and be reimbursed by the grant. I am not familiar with California's statute on the subject. But that aside, I used to work as a lab tech in Histology a long long time ago. I have seen first hand what smoking can do to lungs. I have held a diseased lung in my hand. I was diagnosed with sclc. And know what? I smoked back then and continued to do so until I got sick. Smoking is such an addiction that a person has to be really hit in the face to quit. Granted, we should teach children what such behavior does to your health, but I don't believe we can put the blame all just on smoking. That makes it too easy. My Doc didn't even think my tumor was caused by smoking (though it was a contributing factor)my lungs were quite healthy otherwise. In my many professions in life I have worked with lots of toxins before we had more controls. WHo knows? As to the discrepancy in funding, what about the people with breast cancer that are lifetime smokers? Did the smoking contribute to their cancer? Probably but once you get cancer, who cares? The main point I am trying to make is that we should all be working on the same thing: CANCER. Don't care where it is or what caused it, let's just get rid of the darn stuff!
just my 2 cents
medi

groundhog
Posts: 44
Joined: Jun 2010

Hi medi, I do totally agree with you but my concern was to whoever the speaker would be, that they may be exploited as a former smoker. "Look kids this is what it does to you", or worse yet, "Look kids, you can smoke all you want, we can fix it". So I guess I would rather see the lesser of the two evils (three evils), in the classroom, how about no public speaker, but they might bring in one of those diseased lungs for the kids to see and they can draw their own conclusion?

just something to think about

medi_2's picture
medi_2
Posts: 510
Joined: Aug 2009

Yes I agree with you there.
Medi

nanaof7
Posts: 127
Joined: Feb 2009

my onco has a poster in one of her exam rooms that lung cancer is not just for smokers and the numbers were higher for non smokers I am going to go to her office and get the numbers its like when they tell people to quit smoking and there chances of getting lung cancer is much less , well out of all my smoking friends that I kept telling to quit Im the one that got lung cancer and am much younger and quit 20 yrs ago so what does it matter just get annual chest xrays just like mamo's and gyno and prostrate checks and stop with the smoking
debate

Dapsterd's picture
Dapsterd
Posts: 291
Joined: Jun 2010

Why would anyone except $$?......whats a few hundred $$ going to do? It will not pay my bills!! If a person must get paid for speaking to people about cancer, then they are doing it for the wrong reasons......just my opinion

Dave

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