Monday, February 13, 2012

That five year mark

So the question arises - why five years? Why was five years selected as the survival rate time frame used in cancer statistics? I mean why not 3, 7, 6 or 4? I have no idea. This year I will reach the five year mark with breast cancer and I am not jumping up and down with joy. I think it will be just another day. I don't divide life with cancer into five year increments. Life doesn't get broken down into five year increments. We celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays annually. But communist countries have five year plans. Is life with cancer broken down into five year plans as well?

In the past five years I have lost a few friends to cancer. One was lost to triple negative breast cancer which I have since learned if it is going to recur it usually does in the first 18-24 months. She only made it about 4 years from her diagnosis. So why five years for that? She and others like her just become part of the ones who didn't make it when you look at the statistics.

When I was diagnosed in 2007, a Boston area TV newscaster went public with her diagnosis and is now talking about her five years with cancer. She is also frustrated by the lack of a cure so far. It was nice to follow her treatment as she was a few months ahead of me. Its now nice to see that she is doing well too but acknowledges how her life has changed.

I am just not sure I understand why they selected five years as the increment for life with cancer as life goes on day by day.


Trudy Smith said...

I am a 25 and 15 year survivor. I am one of six finalists for the American Breast Care Company contest. They make breast prothesis and put inspirational sayings on the back of them. My quote is "There are miracles behind every door, be brave enough to open it." I need votes to win until March 31st, 2012. If chosen I would become the voice of inspiration for one year and my quote put on the breast forms. If you would like to participate go to, click vote and choose.
Thank you for letting me make a comment,
Trudy Smith

Breast awareness said...

I really hate breast cancer. As it takes away my friends. but i saw many survivors who is my aunt . i love her so much.

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