KCCure Blog

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Laura’s story

My doctors and the researchers running clinical trials are my heroes. They are why I'm able to continue living my life, raising my children and enjoying time with my husband, family and friends.

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Holly and Joe

Does this story sound familiar? The ups and downs of a cancer diagnosis. Thank you Holly and Joe for sharing your story!

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Ken’s story

Thanks Ken for sharing your story about why it's so important to have regular follow-up care after a kidney cancer diagnosis!

Still Always Yes

This photo of my daughter was taken eight years ago, a week before my husband was diagnosed with kidney cancer. Even though we didn't find a cure, I'm grateful for the past and hopeful for the future.

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Jennifer Leiser

My unique combination makes me a lab rat for my oncologists, and that's okay— I hope that my story will help everyone impacted by Tuberous Sclerosis Complex and Renal Cell Carcinoma.

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Elise Whitehill

Here’s to the caregivers who fight tirelessly for their loved ones battling kidney cancer.  The men and women who manage medication, drive to appointments, fax medical records and know more about their loved-ones illness than most doctors.  They monitor side effects better than a trial nurse.  And when necessary, they shave heads.  Thank you caregivers.  Thank you Elise, caregiver to Mark. No hair…Don’t care We ended up just shaving Mark’s head. The few patches and wisps left were not a flattering look. He’s likely permanently bald, but it’s worth it. The aggressive tumor on his head that grew to the size of my fist has shrunk to just the size of my fingertip. If someone didn’t know it was there they might not notice. And I can feel the bone remode...

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Shaun Tierney

Well it’s official. The day I never thought possible is here. I’ve reached a decade of living with Stage IV RCC (Kidney Cancer). The difficult treatments that have made this possible, will continue until they stop working or a cure is found. When I was diagnosed, surviving this long was virtually unheard of. Back then we hoped that I’d live for two years. On February 22, 2007 around 4:00PM, my wife and I sat shattered and numb in my primary care physician’s office. Our world had just imploded and would never be the same again. Everyone reading this has entered that same black hole. But as hopeless as the situation was on that day, somehow I’m still here. I know that could change tomorrow, so I choose to focus on the present. Naturally I’m happy to be ali...

Voices of Kidney Cancer – Holly Johnson

March is Kidney Cancer Awareness month and my very efficient, hard working 90% of my left and only kidney would like to say something. No microphone needed as this is not an awards show but a REWARD to all that adapt, re-think and change as life shines forward. I can only hope that any of you that get diagnosed with cancer realize how many resources there are available to you. So pay attention to those tiny voices inside and if something feels wrong with your body, act on that. Awareness and action could save your life. And if you already have cancer, we know it’s SO not black and white. At times, it feels as if all your color has been pulled from your body. Your past self is just that, way in the past. But your mind does not forget how you once were. In fact, it believes you are sti...

March is Kidney Cancer Awareness Month – Join our Facebook Campaign and tell your story!

I’ll be honest, there’s something about the word “awareness” that I’ve never really liked – I think it’s because I wish we didn’t have to be aware of kidney cancer.  And I suppose it makes sense, because our goal at KCCure is to raise money for research to eliminate kidney cancer – to end the need for an awareness month. But for now, there are too many reminders that it still exists.  Spending the day yesterday with a patient, I was reminded how little we know about rare subtypes like Translocation Xp112.  At the ASCO-GU conference in Florida last month, we saw papers presented on the need for more knowledge about Renal Medullary Carcinoma, a rare and aggressive variant of kidney cancer.  We heard from Dr. Marston Linehan about how far we’ve come in finding genetic ...

Pearls of wisdom in an oyster cracker

I do see the pearl of wisdom even if it’s in an oyster cracker in a styrofoam cup. Today was my first and last scan for the year. A first because I’m on a different kind of treatment now which is not chemotherapy based, but immune therapy based. First scan on a new drug always has my thoughts in open waters and sinking. Oysters are heavy you know. And last, because I have no more scans for the rest of the year! If you knew how often I am scanned, (think claustrophobic tendencies AND being completely still for sometimes an hour and a half at a pop) you would also be rejoicing. Hard to swallow without hot sauce for sure and since I don’t eat oysters, the seasoned cracker kind will do just fine. I often wonder how my body can ingest all these toxins for almost 11 years living with kidney canc...

A Break From Cancer

A friend sent me a note the other day.  She said she was looking forward to the holidays, to a break from cancer.  As a caregiver to her husband, she made the decision to stop worrying and just appreciate each day for the next few weeks.  Does that sound familiar?  If you’ve experienced cancer in your life, you’ve probably said similar things. Of course, it’s a bit of a folly.  When cancer is a part of your life, you never really get a break from it.  The nagging fears and concerns lurk in the crevices of our minds.  Regardless of your situation – whether you’re stage 1 or stage 4 – the fear of recurrence, concerns about whether a treatment is working, wondering about side effects – it’s just a part of life with cancer. When KCCure first formed, we had a long brainstorming session about ou...

Reasons for Today – Flow Like Water

Holidays can be difficult for kidney cancer patients and caregivers, but there is a path to peace.

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