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Posts by tdomf_3027e
SaludToday Guest Blogger: Patti Murillo-Casa
It was October 2008 when I was diagnosed with Stage IIB Cervical Cancer only three months after I had retired from the NYC Police Department and was ready to enjoy retirement with my husband.
I had not visited my GYN doctor for over three years. Why did I not go to the doctor sooner? Because of the many reasons that women use as an excuse: I was too busy, I had no time, I felt fine, I hate going to the gynecologist and I had been with my husband for over 10 years.
Looking back, I see how foolish these reasons were and the tremendous consequences that followed because I chose to be careless with my health.
Once I finally saw my gynecologist because of several symptoms, he told me I had a tumor and since it was too big, I was not a good candidate for a hysterectomy. The course of action we were going to have to take ( if we had any chance of beating this) was chemotherapy, external radiation for 8 weeks and two treatments of internal radiation.
I was about to start the fight for my life. The journey was long and difficult, but I had the support of my wonderful husband, family and friends, who gave me strength and made me realize the many blessings around me which comforted me, because I was scared beyond belief.
I started treatment early January 2009. Eight weeks went by and I thought the worst of these treatments had passed. I was wrong! I started a course of internal radiation, in which the doctors inserted an implant inside my cervix with radiation rods. I had to stay in the hospital for 3 days and absolutely no visitors were allowed due to the exposure of radiation. I never felt so ALONE.
On May 5, 2009 I went in for a scan to see if all of these treatments had worked. Thankfully, my tumor was GONE and there were no cancer cells visible. The nightmare was over!!!
Due to lack of education and misconceptions of the disease on my part, I was embarrassed that I had cervical cancer due to HPV (a sexually transmitted infection). I couldn’t understand how I got this until I started educating myself about HPV and its link to cervical cancer.
In the U.S. alone, 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and nearly 4,000 will die every year.
Cervical cancer is caused by “high-risk” types of the human papillomavirus (HPV), and at least 50 percent of sexually active women will have HPV at some point in their lives. Two of the major issues with this disease are lack of education and lack of screening. Early detection through pap tests and HPV testing are key to preventing this disease from developing into cancer.
Currently, I am cancer free and I use my story to let women know that my story doesn’t have to be theirs and that they don’t have to be a statistic. I am also the NYC Chapter President of Tamika and Friends, Inc. (www.tamikaandfriends.org), a national nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness about cervical cancer. No women should die of this disease nor lose their fertility to cervical cancer.
You’re invited to an event June 24 by Girls Inc. of San Antonio, an affiliate of the national Girls Inc. organization that delivers programs that help empower local girls ages 6-18 and increase their self-esteem.
At the event, Girls Inc. girls will present forward-thinking solutions to combat childhood obesity.
Attendees also can engage with local political leaders, community partners and school administrators on their pro-active approaches to improve the nutritional standards of local children. Laura Esparza of the Institute for Health Promotion Research at The UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, the team behind SaludToday, will be a distinguished panelist at the event.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
1209 S. St. Mary’s St.
San Antonio, TX 78210
For more info on Girls Inc. of San Antonio, go here.
Posted by Sarah Wall:
“Children’s Council of San Francisco is a nonprofit that provides child care resources, referrals, and subsidies for families in San Francisco. We also offer training and support for child care providers. Although we serve all families in San Francisco, regardless of background, I’m particularly proud to share some of the ways that we’ve been helping Latino parents and child care providers around issues of health and nutrition.”
“We are a sponsor agency of the Child Care Food Program, a federally funded nutrition program. Through this program, we are able to reimburse child care providers for feeding nutritious meals to the children in their care. We also offer cooking classes, healthy recipe ideas, and physical activity classes to child care providers.”
“Last year, 275 San Francisco child care providers learned about child nutrition and healthy cooking through the Child Care Food Program. These providers went on to serve 112,000 healthy meals each month to the children in their care, and to educate families about nutrition.”
“We also hold a nutrition fair every year for parents, kids, and child care providers at San Francisco’s Sanchez Elementary School, located in the heart of the city’s Latino community. Fair attendees enjoy seed planting, nutrition-related arts and crafts, an exercise area, a farmers’ market, and educational activities in English and Spanish. Sanchez Elementary School has its own garden, and our attendees get to sample delicious vegetables grown by students and teachers.”
“Through our Gardens to Grow program, we have installed three gardens in child care centers in neighborhoods that lack consistent access to fresh produce. We also invite low-income residents to select fresh produce and learn more about nutrition in English and Spanish.”
“Our Health and Nutrition program does a great job of reaching out to the Latino community, and our bilingual health and nutrition liaison, Julisa Nunez, has taught so many parents and providers about maintaining a healthy lifestyle.”
“Thanks for publishing the SaludToday blog. We at Children’s Council of San Francisco enjoy hearing what other nonprofits and grassroots organizations are doing to bolster family health and nutrition!”