Welcome to My Personal Page
Support My Ride to Conquer Cancer?
Welcome to my Personal Page for The Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting Princess Margaret Hospital, a cycling journey from Toronto to Niagara Falls that I'm embarking on to fight cancer. It will be a challenge in a number of ways, but with my bike, my helmet, and your generosity, a real impact will be made!
As you know, I am an orthopaedic surgeon specialising in the management of patients with Bone and Soft Tissue Sarcomas. Besides providing innovative and compassionate patient care, I am very involved in research to develop new treatments to improve the cure rate for this disease, improve functional outcomes and quality of life for our patients, and also train and educate specialists from across Canada and from around the world to be able to replicate our successes when they return to their home institutions.
Through research support such as will be raised through the Ride to Conquer Cancer, huge improvements in the treatment and outcome for patients with sarcomas have occurred. For example, osteosarcoma is probably the best known type of sarcoma in Canada because it was the disease that afflicted Terry Fox. During the era when Terry was treated, every patient underwent an amputation of their limb, but only 5-10% of patients were cured. Today we are able to perform limb preserving surgery for 95% of patients, and approximately 75% of patients are cured!
There are so many success stories of patients I've treated for sarcoma, but not everyone is cured.
The photo you see above is of a patient of mine who had chemotherapy and very complex limb preserving surgery for osteosarcoma of the tibia (shin bone) and knee joint in 2003. Following extensive rehabilitation, he successfully returned to play university lacrosse, and in 2006 played on the Canadian National Lacrosse Team that won the World Lacrosse Championships. Two years later in Shanghai, China he was a torch carrier during the Summer Olympics. Unfortunately his cancer recently recurred, and despite repeat treatment, unfortunately he died from sarcoma.
I often smile when I think of another patient who had a soft tissue sarcoma of the calf treated in 1996 with limb preserving surgery and radiation. She was treated successfuly for recurrences of her sarcoma over many years. Her initial surgery took place in December around the time of the Jewish holiday Chanukah, the festival of light. Every year in December since her sugery, she brought me a beautiful box of hand crafted Chanukah candles to share with my family, and to celebrate another year of her miracle. Every December I have looked forward to her visit. Unfortunately she recently developed a different type of cancer which took her life.
These two examples of initial successes followed by challenges make it clear why fundraising such as through the Ride to Conquer Cancer is so important. We need to keep doing research in order to develop better and more effective treatments for our patients.
Stories like this inspire me, and hopefully will encourage you to donate to this effort in support of sarcoma patient care, education and research.
Please contribute to this history-making event with a donation. Funds raised in The Ride to Conquer Cancer will support breakthrough research, exemplary teaching, and compassionate care at The Princess Margaret, one of the top cancer research centres in the world.
Thank you in advance for your help.
Rubinoff-Gross Chair in Orthopaedic Oncology
Mount Sinai Hospital,Toronto, Canada
Sarcoma Site Group,
Princess Margaret Hospital,Toronto,Canada
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