Alert
Close

You could save thousands with the AARP Auto Buying Program. Learn more

HIGHLIGHTS

Open

AARP VETERAN MEMBERSHIP

Military and Veterans Discount

CONTESTS AND SWEEPS

AARP REALPAD

Introducing RealPad by AARP

AUTO BUYING PROGRAM

AARP Auto Buying Program

Download the ipad App

AARP-iPad-ePub-app

DRIVER SAFETY

Piggy bank on the road - AARP Driver Safety

Take the new AARP Smart Driver Course!

KEEP BRAIN ACTIVE!

AARP Games - Play Now!

AARP BOOKS

Planning for Long-Term Care for Dummies

Get expert advice on planning for your own or a relative’s future care needs.

Webinars

Learn From the Experts

Sign up now for an upcoming webinar or find materials from a past session.

Learning centers

Get smart strategies for managing health conditions.

 

Arthritis

Heart Disease

Diabetes

Most Popular

Viewed

We're All Survivors

Whether you've been recently diagnosed, are in the midst of treatment, have received a clean bill of health — or even if your cancer might never be "cured" — you are a survivor.

In the 1980s, advocacy groups for people with cancer, including the National Coalition of Cancer Survivorship, worked to change the way our culture looks at people with the disease. Instead of "victims," those dealing with the disease — beginning when they are diagnosed and continuously, throughout their lives — are called "survivors." Some people expand the "survivor" classification to include family, friends, and caregivers.

Many cancer survivors lead normal lives with few, if any, side effects. In fact, two-thirds of survivors report that cancer has not had a significant long-term impact on their lives, according to research published in 2003 in the International Journal of Cancer. Some may go into long-term remission.

But some survivors, like Peggy Chehardy, Ph.D., a 57-year-old medical educator in Louisiana, may live with cancer as a chronic disease requiring periodic treatments. She had Paget's disease of the vulva, a type of cancer that has a high likelihood of recurrence.

"I didn't know cancer could be considered a chronic disease," she said. "I thought of it as black and white — that you had to fight the disease if you didn't want it to come back — and that causes a lot of stress. But if you know it's chronic, you have to respect what it is and deal with it."

Some survivors may battle the return of cancer, while others may even get different cancers. John McKemie, a banking executive in Houston, has battled several kinds of cancer over the past 20 years. He's drawn on every tool he could find — staying active, relaxation, visualization, prayer, volunteering — and he encourages others to do the same.

"People have to find their own way," he said. "You have to mobilize everything you can to effectively face cancer, live with it, and, hopefully, get it behind you."

 

Printed with permission from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center ©2010.

Medical Disclaimer for AARP.org

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Membership Discount Benefit Pet Plan Dog

Members save 10% or more on Petplan pet insurance premiums.

Senior couple working on laptop. Medicare open enrollment. (David Jakle/Corbis)

Medicare Open Enrollment Period Ends Dec. 7 ─ AARP® Medicare Plans from UnitedHealthcare.

Grandson (8-9) whispering to grandfather, close-up

Members can save 20% on hearing aids with the AARP® Hearing Care Program provided by HearUSA.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points