Blog Archives

✨Wishlist Wednesday✨ Support Garth Taylor’s 🤼‍♂️Fundraising Fight🤼‍♂️ for LFCT


Garth Taylor will once again be churning out hits of a different kind this September (International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month) in order to raise funds for the vital work done by the Little Fighters Cancer Trust.

Garth has supported LFCT over the years, and last year took part in the “White Collar Boxing 14” event at Scarlett Ribbon in Greenstone Park to raise funds for the Little Fighters Cancer Trust.

Last year Garth said, “After having my sister, Joanne, taken away from me by cancer, I have even more of a soft spot toward people who are fighting cancer. Having watched what she went through as an adult fighting this disease, I can only imagine how much worse it is for children who are suffering from cancer, to fight this battle. So, I figured, how bad can it be? Me, stepping into the ring and getting punched around for kids who are fighting for their lives every single day. I might as well see what I can do, if not through my singing, then by getting into the ring and doing something more exciting, so that people and companies pledge money and hopefully we can raise enough funds to help these little kids. I see cancer as a big bully hurting these children, and that is what I will be fighting.”

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HIV & Cancer Fields Collaborate For a Cure


Revolutions in cancer treatment are being tested in HIV in the hopes it will bring the world closer to a cure.

The first-ever anti-HIV drug, AZT, was initially developed to fight cancer but was abandoned in preliminary testing. This breakthrough drug saved lives and offered hope to people with AIDS. Over two decades later, the fields of oncology and HIV are collaborating again in the search for a functional cure for AIDS.

Why HIV cure and cancer?” asked Nobel Laureate Professor Françoise Barré-Sinoussi at a meeting in Paris last month. Renowned for co-discovering the HI virus in 1983, she said that the two had more in common that one would expect.

At a forum held shortly before the 9th International AIDS Society (IAS) Conference on HIV Science in late July Barré-Sinoussi said a collaboration between the two fields held promise towards finding a more sustainable solution to the current option for people living with HIV: daily treatment for life.

Well we know, first of all, some people on long-term treatment develop cancer,” she explained. Secondly, she said that over the past five years there is “more and more data” showing similarities between tumour cells and those latently infected with HIV.

When a person’s antiretroviral treatment (ART) is working to suppress the amount of virus in the blood to below detectable levels (an undetectable viral load) a number of HIV-infected cells persist. These cells, latently infected cells, stop infecting other cells with HIV but they reactivate when a person stops taking ART. A group of latently infected cells is called an HIV reservoir – and it is this that scientists are trying to locate and destroy in the hopes of finding a cure.

 

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Our New Office & Pre-Loved Charity Shoppe


I was unfortunately unable to go through to Paarl in the week of the 15th to help with the massive job of packing and moving premises as I was indisposed – thankfully the Little Fighters Trust is fortunate enough to have some wonderful supporters that arrived in spades to help.

Last Friday I went through for a meeting and I was astounded at how much had already been sorted out and how great the new premises looked. I really have to take my hat off to all the helpers, but most of all to Team LFCT – all 3 of the ladies who run the office and the shop – the place looks STUNNING!!!!

While a paint job on the outside is called for, that will have to wait until their is time and the funds for the paint. The signage will be put up this week and I know Mandie will post pics of that, but in the meantime here are some photos I took after our meeting.

Please click on the photos to go to gallery view for larger photos and captions.

 

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✨Thankful Thursday ✨ 💞Mandela Day Gratitude 🙏


WOW! WOW! WOW! ✨ It is with the utmost humbleness and extreme gratitude 🙏 that we pen this post today.

While the Little Fighters Cancer Trust believes in making every day a Mandela Day, we usually do something extra every year on Mandela Day as well.

This year, due to unforseen circumstances, we ended up moving premises over this period and for the first time, we requested help for ourselves for Mandela Day – and we received  – it in heaps!!!

While most people believe that the Little Fighters Cancer Trust is a massive concern with many staff because we work Nationally, the truth is that there are only THREE permanent staff, all ladies, at our HO – everyone else Nationally is a volunteer….

We would firstly like to thank every one of our supporters that have supported us throughout the year, without you all we can do absolutely NOTHING. We are extremely grateful to each and every one of you, as are all of our Little Fighters and their Families.

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Do Alternative/Complementary Treatments Work for Cancer Treatment Side-Effects?


These days, walking into any major cancer centre looks rather different to a few years ago, because you are likely to see not only ordinary examination rooms, equipment, and chemotherapy suites, but also massage rooms, yoga mats, and possibly even a music therapy room.

This is the world of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. More and more recent research now supports complementary treatments such as Acupuncture, Yoga, and some diet supplements as good ways to relieve some of the side-effects of Chemotherapy Treatments.

Treatment centres that offer complementary options, as well as the amount of individuals taking advantage of them, have increased dramatically across the globe in recent years, with some studies showing that around 50% of all people undergoing cancer treatment use some kind of complementary option.

Most of the complementary treatments recommended by medical  doctors have few or no side-effects, according to the director of medical content at the American Cancer Society, Ted Gansler, MD, who states that it is fine to try Music Therapy or Meditation, for example, while you follow your standard treatment plan.

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Conquering Cancer’s Biggest Side-Effect: Fear


Cancer can be a frightening, nerve-wracking disease, and medical science often overlooks the emotional toll it takes on patients.

Children with Cancer can suffer even worse as they have to deal with all the hospital and clinic appointments, tests, tubes, operations, scans and treatments.

When dealing with Childhood Cancer, not only does the disease take its toll on the Child with Cancer, but also on the Parents and siblings.

The stress of dealing with cancer in a child can cause many problems in the family unit, with siblings feeling that they are being ignored, parents being overworked and run ragged as the disease takes its course, and many fathers are unable to cope as they feel helpless and that they have failed their child – on top of which the mother often has to stop working to support the Child with Cancer – leaving the father as the only breadwinner and the only one at home to take care of the rest of the family.

Childhood Cancer often causes the break-up of the family unit, ending in divorce and leaving the mother to deal with everything on her own.

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How the Cost of Cancer Drugs in South Africa can be Cut


South Africa’s Competition Commission has launched an investigation into excessive pricing by three major pharmaceutical companies that have the sole rights to distribute cancer drugs in the country.

The commission’s job is to protect ordinary South Africans from abuse by dominant players. It has powers to investigate and evaluate restrictive business practices, abuse of dominant positions and mergers.

Its investigation into the drug companies is vital as cancer treatment is unaffordable for most South Africans. Many medical schemes – which offer medical cover to 16% of the population or 7 million people – refuse to pay for the medication because of the cost.

In South Africa all drug prices are approved and signed off by the medicines pricing committee in the National Department of Health. But our hope is that the commission’s investigation could still drive competition among suppliers, and in turn more affordable prices for cancer treatment. This should result in better access to affordable drugs, particularly for poor people.

 

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Foodie Friday: Nutritional e’Pap Recipes


Yesterday we gave you some important information about e’Pap, a revolutionary nutrient-loaded porridge that was created to cater to the feeding needs of HIV patients and babies.

Nutrient content in fruit and vegetables has dropped up to 76% over the past 50 years in the USA and Europe. Proof that modern intensive agriculture practices create the problem. The result is a global crisis of mass starvation of micro-nutrients in communities both rich and poor.

Such is the success of e’Pap in improving nutrition, energy and productivity for those who consume it, that up to two million servings a month of e’Pap are distributed in Africa.

e’Pap could be the answer for Children with Cancer – it is full of vitamins, cheap, and easy-to-make; it does not even require cooking so is suitable for use in even the remotest rural areas.

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Revolutionary Nutritional Porridge Created by South African Doctor Saving Lives!


Children with Cancer generally have many problems caused by their cancer and by the cancer treatments they are undergoing, such as Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy, including losing weight, inability to eat or swallow, and an impaired immune system exactly at the time that they need everything they can get to fight this devastating disease.

Part of the answer to these problems may lay in a nutrient-loaded porridge that was developed by the late Dr Basil Kransdorff, a South African doctor,  specifically to cater to feeding HIV patients and babies.

The late Dr Basil Kransdorff and wife Rose’s work helping an NGO called CARE (Community AIDS Response) at the Joburg General Hospital, led to a worldwide debate on Food Security vs Nutrition Security.

Back in 2000 there was no medication and Doctors were telling patients diagnosed with HIV to go home, eat a healthy well-balanced diet and prepare to die. It was a difficult time when little was known about treating those living with HIV.

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Collusion Probe into Cancer Medications


As if Cancer patients do not have a difficult enough time fighting this destructive disease, Pharmaceutical Companies in South Africa are now being investigated for excessive pricing of cancer medication.

Commissioner Tembinkosi Bonakele from the Competition Commission announced last week at a briefing at the Department of Trade and Industry headquarters in Pretoria on Tuesday, that an investigation is to be initiated against oncology medicine provider Roche Holding AG, which includes its US-based biotechnology company Genentech Incorporated.

The matter is of grave national importance,” said Bonakele.

He explained that anti-competitive behaviour the healthcare sector, particularly pharmaceuticals could have a negative impact on consumers, specifically the poor and vulnerable.

The commission believes the company has engaged in excessive pricing, price discrimination and exclusionary conduct in the provision of breast cancer medicine in South Africa.

The commission says it has reason to believe that pharmaceutical companies Aspen, Roche and Pfizer are involved in alleged excessive pricing of these lifesaving drugs.

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Private Doctors Jump in to Rescue KZN Cancer Patients


In a Facebook Post last week, we shared with you the frightening news that Cancer Patients in Kwazulu Natal in South Africa would henceforth have to relocate to another province or die as the last cancer specialist in Durban has resigned.

As of the close of business on Friday‚ there will not be a single cancer specialist doctor employed at any state hospital in Durban – and only two will be left in KwaZulu-Natal.

This shocking development leaves hundreds – if not thousands – of cancer patients in KwaZulu-Natal’s biggest city facing clinical uncertainty and staring the possibility of death squarely in the face. It follows the resignation of the city’s last state oncologist‚ whose last day is Friday.

At least two cancer patients’ families have attributed their untimely deaths to the non-functional cancer treatment equipment at Addington‚ according to a statement released ahead of a march by doctors in Durban. Both patients were reportedly referred to Inkosi Albert Luthuli hospital as oncology machines at Addington were allegedly broken. But because of excessively long waiting lists‚ they died before they could be treated.

Democratic Alliance MPL Dr Imran Keeka said the party had submitted a complaint to the SA Human Rights Commission in February last year about the collapse of the oncology service.

He said a report‚ which has not been made public yet‚ was forwarded to him and the respondents‚ KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo‚ the KZN Department of Health‚ and officials at Addington and Inkosi Albert Luthuli.

“Because the report cannot be made public as yet‚ the contents cannot be divulged. The DA is hopeful that the unchanged report is made public very soon‚” he said.

Fortunately this week we can bring you some slightly better news…

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A Happy & Blessed Father’s Day to ALL Fathers!


A good father makes all the difference in a child’s life. He’s a pillar of strength, support and discipline. His work is endless and, oftentimes, thankless.

The father of a Child with Cancer has an even harder job because he must continually stay strong for his child, even when they are in so much pain that it makes him want to cry.

The vulnerability they experience is stupefying and causes self-doubt, general worry, and frustration with the medical care they receive.

The father of a Child with Cancer rises to the challenge, whether holding a vomit bucket while their child empties their insides, squeezing into a tiny bed with their child overnight in the hospital, or delivering countless meds through syringes.

Even when at work, there is no magical “off switch” to shut off the immense stress and worry that onco-dads feel about their family. “It’s hard to focus, especially after a night where you rushed your child to the hospital with a seizure.”

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Cancer Not Recognised as a Priority Disease in South Africa


It is  crying shame to see what has happened to the once proud, functional and world-renowned South African Health Department.

South Africa used to have some of the best hospitals, doctors and nurses in the world and they were sought after by many overseas countries, but alas that is no more…

Twenty years ago on the 24th of this month a wonderful medical team at Groote Schuur Hospital saved my life (Stage IV Urethral Carcinoma) – virtually all of them are now either retired or practicing overseas due to the sad condition of and lack of support from the South African Department of Health 😦

It has become the norm to see articles about bad medical practices, hospitals and clinics running out of chronic medication, broken equipment, patients being left to lie in their own excrement, patients not being attended to and patients dying needlessly, etc. etc. and it makes me wanna bawl my eyes out…

While the following article is essentially about the state of the Ailing Kwazulu-Natal Health System, one has only to watch the news or read a newspaper to know that things are not much better at other State Hospitals around the country 😦

Health Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi has a lot of explaining to do…

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Remedies for Diarrhoea after Cancer Therapy


Conventional Cancer Treatments such as Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy unfortunately generally come with a variety of not-so-nice side effects, such as diarrhoea, one of the more dangerous side effects.

Diarrhoea can not only be painful, but it also removes important nutrients, probiotics, and water from the body. As a result, diarrhoea puts one at a higher risk for more trauma from infection and dehydration.

It is important to manage these side effects immediately to prevent further complications that will weaken your body. The best way to heal is to ensure that you eat only healthy foods and avoid problematic foods that are going to worsen your diarrhoea.

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High Levels of Education Linked to Heightened Brain Tumour Risk


A university degree is linked to a heightened risk of developing a brain tumor, suggests a large observational study, published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

Gliomas, in particular, were more common among people who had studied at university for at least three years than they were among those who didn’t go on to higher education, the data show.

The researchers base their findings on more than 4.3 million Swedes, all of whom were born between 1911 and 1961 and living in Sweden in 1991.

They were monitored between 1993 and 2010 to see if they developed a primary brain tumor, and information on educational attainment, disposable income, marital status, and occupation was obtained from national insurance, labour market,and national census data.

During the monitoring period, 1.1 million people died and more than 48,000 emigrated, but 5735 of the men and 7101 of the women developed a brain tumour. Read the rest of this entry

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