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Friday, January 2, 2009

Hodgkin's Lymphoma Statistics and in Celebrities

I actually forced myself to NOT look at statistics while I was sick. The statistics are not bad for Hodgkin's really but while looking for them you still find the bad ones. The worst case scenarios are out there. They are scary. I have seen many young women and men that died from Hodgkin's that kept coming back, so obviously that is my worst fear. It's hard to not be afraid. The best statistics are if it's caught early. I know without a doubt I had it for about 3 years before we found it. So, would that be found late? I don't know. I know I had a large bulky tumor but was never for sure told what stage I had. We couldn't do a full body scan with me being pregnant and unable to lie flat. It changed things and left me so confused. I think I'll discuss this with my doc on the 22nd. I'd like to know what stage he would have considered me. He must have an educated guess!

Here are some statistics regarding Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

1. It occurs most frequently in two separate age groups, the first being young adulthood (age 15–35) and the second being in those over 55 years old although these peaks may vary slightly with nationality. Overall, it is more common in males, except for the nodular sclerosis variant which is more common in females.

2. The annual incidence of Hodgkin's lymphoma is about 1 in 25,000 people, and the disease accounts for slightly less than 1% of all cancers worldwide.

3. Patients with Hodgkin lymphoma may present with the following symptoms:

Night Sweats
Lymph nodes: the most common symptom of Hodgkin's is the painless enlargement of one or more lymph nodes. The nodes may also feel rubbery and swollen when examined. The nodes of the neck and shoulders (cervical and supraclavicular) are most frequently involved (80-90% of the time, on average). The lymph nodes of the chest are often affected and these may be noticed on a chest radiograph.

Splenomegaly: enlargement of the spleen occurs in about 30% of people with Hodgkin's lymphoma. The enlargement, however, is seldom massive and the size of the spleen may fluctuate during the course of treatment.

Hepatomegaly: enlargement of the liver, due to liver involvement, is present in about five percent of cases.

Hepatosplenomegaly: the enlargement of both the liver and spleen caused by the same disease.

Pain following alcohol consumption: classically, involved nodes are painful after alcohol consumption, though this phenomenon is very uncommon.

Back pain: nonspecific back pain (pain that cannot be localized or its cause determined by examination or scanning techniques) has been reported in some cases of Hodgkin lymphoma. The lower back is most often affected.

Red-colored patches on the skin, easy bleeding and petechiae due to low platelet count

Systemic symptoms: about one-third (⅓) of patients with Hodgkin's disease may also present with systemic symptoms, including low-grade fever; night sweats; unexplained weight loss of at least 10% of the patient's total body mass in six months or less, itchy skin (pruritus) due to increased levels of eosinophils in the bloodstream; or fatigue (lassitude). Systemic symptoms such as fever, night sweats, and weight loss are known as B symptoms; thus, presence of fever, weight loss, and night sweats indicate that the patient's stage is, for example, 2B instead of 2A.

Cyclical fever: patients may also present with a cyclical high-grade fever known as the Pel-Ebstein fever, or more simply "P-E fever". However, there is debate as to whether or not the P-E fever truly exists.

Notable cases

Gerald Finzi, English composer. Died of the disease in 1956 aged 55.

Paul Allen, Microsoft co-founder, was diagnosed and treated for Hodgkin's lymphoma in 1983.

Lynden David Hall died of Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2006.

Delta Goodrem, Australian singer, was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in July 2003

Alese Coco One of the most notable non-celebrities to have Hodgkin's disease. Known worldwide as a torch bearer for Hodgkin's research. Died at 23 years old.

WWE wrestler Rowdy Roddy Piper was announced to have been diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2006.

John Millington Synge, the Irish author best known for the play The Playboy of the Western World, died in 1909 from the disease.

Dinu Lipatti, the Romanian pianist, died of Hodgkin's disease in 1950, 33 years old.

Wayne Shelford, aka 'Buck' Shelford, former All Black rugby player for New Zealand.

Elizabeth Madox Roberts, a noted Kentucky poet and novelist, died from Hodgkin's in 1941.

Joy Hester, a noted Australian artist, died from Hodgkin's in 1960.

Emma Lazarus, Jewish American poetess, writer of the New Colossus, died of Hodgkin's disease on 19 November 1887.

Martin Fry, vocalist with ABC, was treated for Hodgkin's Disease in 1985/86.

Journalist Giles Smith describes his bout with Hodgkin's in his memoir Lost in Music; he refers to the fact that Martin Fry (above) had the same condition.

James Whitham, motorcycle racer, was treated for Hodgkin's Disease in 1995/96.

Glen Goins, singer and guitarist for Parliament Funkadelic died from Hodgkin's Disease in 1978.

Alexander Litvinov, a Russian rock poet and musician, died from Hodgkin's Disease in 1999.

Jamie Tape AFL Footballer.

Freida Riley, an American schoolteacher who inspired the Rocket Boys, died of Hodgkin's Disease in 1969 at the age of 31. The movie October Sky was made in honor of her and the Rocket boys.

Jane Austen, one of the most famous authors of English literature, died in 1817 aged 41. Previously it has been thought she died of Addison's disease; however, more recently speculation has suggested that it may have been Hodgkin's disease instead

Seumas McNally, a computer game programmer and president of Longbow Digital Arts, died on March 21, 2000; he was diagnosed with the disease three years earlier.

Famous American writer Dale Carnegie died of Hodgkin's disease in 1955.

Michael Cuccione, member of the spoof boy band, 2ge+her, was treated for Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 1994/95. He died from complications related to his treatment in 2001.

Knut Schreiner of Turbonegro was diagnosed with the disease in March 2008

Martyn Bennett One of Scotland's most talented musicians died of Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 2005. He was 33 years old.

Actor DJ Qualls diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma at 14, declared to be in remission after 2 years of treatment at 16.

Australian Artist Joy Hester (1920-1960) was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Disease at the age of 27.

I got a lot of this information from Wikipedia which I know is not always 100% correct but I have looked for this information many times and it appears to be accurate. Here is where I obtained the info:'s_lymphoma

Also one that I am personally aware of and was saddened by is Richard Harris or the first Dumbledore from the Harry Potter movies. You might notice he was replaced after the second film. He died from Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Here is an article I found on it.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Year's Celebration. My husband and I went out and had a wonderful time with my sister, her husband and another couple who are good friends of ours. We stopped at Applebees and had some appetizers and drinks. I had a delicious Caramel Appletini. I always wanted to try an appletini since I saw Emeril Aggassi make one. I think that's how you spell his name by the way. Not quite positive. I love watching cooking shows. When I was sick I really did watch them all the time. I couldn't eat, so I watched others cook and eat. Sounds so funny to me now. I could only stomach a bite or two before I got sick to my stomach. I really love Paula Deen, Rachel Ray, Bobby Flay. They are my favorites. I love watching Iron Chef and that Throw Down one with Bobby Flay. Good stuff!

I promised pictures but unfortunately took two pics all night. I did not end up taking my camera into the places we went. It was SOOO cold out! Check out these two pics of my husband and I and my sister Cindi and my husband. She bought the same coat I have. I am very flattered she liked it! It's a really comfy warm coat.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year's Eve!

The holidays are always filled with so much excitement and so much to do. Today is really no exception. I am celebrating my birthday tonight with my sister, her hubby and several other friends. We are going out for New Year's AND my birthday. The other night was a special just us night for me and the hubby so I am pretty excited. It's sure to be a very fun and crazy night so I'll make sure to post pics. I hope everyone else does the same on their blogs. I really enjoy seeing into others lives and seeing how they do things. I think it's pretty cool. It must be why I love this blogging thing so much. haha

My oncologist called yesterday. I love my docs and nurses but I still get nervous getting an unexpected call. Well they had to reschedule my appointment which is very bad actually because we have planned an entire vacation around this appointment. We are going to visit my husband's parents in North Carolina and we had everything worked out up to my appointment time and where we would stay etc. We had it all timed out. They wanted to push it ahead a week! I told them no way because my hubby got that particular week off. They did some searching and found a free appointment on the 22nd so I took it. It does cause a few issues but glad I could get in! I get so nervous around appointment time and it is really no exception now. I still get this lump in my throat. I don't know what to think. Is it really my thyroid? This feeling never really did go fully away. Why is it worse at night than in the day? Here are questions I'll ask my doc. Sometimes it makes me feel like I might gag. It scares me but you know, it has always really been there and he says I am cancer free so I am guessing it must be the four thyroid nodules growing in my neck. That could do it. Still I will ask. I have to because otherwise I worry like mad! I'll talk more about my update as the time draws near.

Until then Happy New Year's Eve to all!

Monday, December 29, 2008

My Birthday

It's been a really good birthday. I woke up to lots of hugs and kisses from my wonderful family. My husband MADE me a birthday cake. It was his very first attempt and it was delicious. It means so much more than a store bought one simply because it was made by his own hands. I was so proud of him. :)

Tonight we had my mom come over and watch the kids. We went to a Japanese Steakhouse which was a first for me actually. I loved watching them chop and cook the vegetables and steak. He tried to throw a piece of something in my mouth but I totally missed. It's ok. I had this delicious Fuki Plum Wine which was amazing. I loved it and had such a good time.

After that we headed to the movie theatre. We got a huge popcorn but unfortunately were so stuffed we barely touched it. I did manage to eat two Dove chocolates which were oh so good. The movie was Seven Pounds with Will Smith. I warn you to NOT see this movie without a whole lot of tissue! It's a tear jerker but such a feel good movie full of love. It's sad and makes you think a lot. It can be confusing at first but remember it's a movie that kinda starts at the end and goes back. So if you remember that you'll be ok. I personally am a HUGE Will Smith fan. I have been pretty much since he stepped onto the scene back when I was a teenager listening to Parent's Just Don't Understand. Ahhh the days. Now I am that parent!

Included are a few pics of today. Please enjoy!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

My Mother's Birthday

Well in my family it seems sort of a tradition to have our birthday either close together or on the same day. Today is my mom's 52nd birthday. I haven't seen her in a long time really. I was raised by my father and step mother who to me is just like my real mom. I have two moms as far as I am concerned. I want to wish my mother a very happy birthday today!

I mentioned we have birthdays on the same day or close together. Well obviously mine is tomorrow. So there is that one. I also have a younger sister who shares a birthday with my grandma. My two oldest daughters, ages 11 and 8 also share the exact same birthday. Hubby's is three days before theirs. haha So yes, we keep busy around the birthdays. You would not believe how many people ask if I planned having those girls on the same day. My only reply is "Why would I ever want to do that??"