As both an oncologist and a caregiver to family members with cancer, Rick Boulay MD, finds solace in music. “The combination of a beautiful melody and powerful lyrics taps deeply inside me to a healing place,” says Boulay, Lehigh Valley Health Network’s chief of gynecologic oncology and a classically trained singer.
You will have an opportunity to experience the power of music when Boulay performs “This is the Moment: Songs and Lessons of Cancer Survivorship.” This interactive program, geared toward cancer survivors and their caregivers, explores lessons of cancer survivorship including courage, hopefulness, vulnerability, fear and spirituality through stories and songs in the style of Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban and Andrew Lloyd Webber. Read More
When Margaret Boyle was diagnosed with breast cancer at 88 years old, she didn’t panic. She kept her positive attitude and trusted in her doctors and the new technology and medicine available today.
She also stayed active. Even in her late 80s, you might see her with her binder of exercises at LVHN Fitness in the Health & Wellness Center at Muhlenberg.
“Not everyone my age appreciates that you can have cancer and still live,” she says. “I would say enjoy the day you have, even with cancer. With the treatment you can get today, there could be many more days ahead.”
She credits preventive medicine – getting her annual mammogram – and exercising regularly for helping her stay healthy and recover quickly.
“I was happy with how it all turned out. I have to look in the mirror to see where the surgery was done – it’s just a little line that I hardly notice.”
She shares her story in this eighth and final installment of the weekly winter 2015 series of Many Faces of Breast Cancer. Read 14 first-hand accounts from survivors of breast cancers.
Rania Hanna lost consciousness when she met with her surgical oncologist after learning she had breast cancer. Heiwon Chung, MD, told her she’d be OK and gave her hope, but still Hanna sometimes felt very weak and very sad during her journey.
Family and friends, her nurse navigator and her social worker supported her in many ways. They helped her access a Pink Ribbon Fund grant to cover non-medical bills, pitched in with caring for her children and told her she was still beautiful even without her long, thick hair.
But it was the 37-year-old Allentown woman’s children who really kept her going. “My kids gave me power because I couldn’t imagine them growing up without their mom,” says Hanna, who lost her own mother when she was 15.
She completed treatment in August and says the experience made her stronger and changed her priorities. She shares her story in this week’s installment of the Many Faces of Breast Cancer series.
Patients receiving cancer care at Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) who are in need of covering non-medical expenses received a big boost recently from area youth.
In late January, students from Salisbury Middle School’s Interact Club held their annual Dance-A-Thon and raised more than $5,000. Around the same time, the Senior High Youth Group from New Life Evangelical Lutheran Church in New Tripoli held a “Big Hair Event.” The group collected 87 ponytails for hair donation to Locks of Love, along with $2,300 in cash donations.
Continuing an annual tradition, both groups donated funds raised to LVHN’s David Prager Patient Assistance Fund. Read More
Bobbie Ewing was 49 when she found a lump in her left breast while on vacation. Learning she had cancer in both breasts was shocking.
She opted to get a bilateral mastectomy and have reconstructive surgery. During the process, it was difficult to lift her arms normally.
“Small tasks like putting on pajama tops became huge mountains to climb,” Ewing says. “The first day that I could wash my face by myself – that was an accomplishment.”
She wanted life to be normal. Her problem-solving husband helped her function, and after implant surgery she felt restored.
She shares her breast cancer journey in this week’s installment of the Many Faces of Breast Cancer series.