Let’s raise awareness to combat lymphoma

To the Editor:

My name is Khushali Patel, and I am a seventh-grader at Hollis Brookline Middle School. I lost my grandmother in September 2013 to lymphoma, and it was heartbreaking.

She slowly slipped away and the worst part was that it was a long process, so she was in pain until the end. I really want to make a change throughout the world because each cancer is as dangerous as another. Since Hollis and Brookline residents are kind, I hope you will help me. All cancers deserve attention, just like breast cancer, has so many walks and charities. All cancer sufferers should have what they need to get help. Therefore, people should be more aware of Lymphoma cancer.

Did you know that one person every four minutes is diagnosed with blood cancer in the United States, according to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Societ)? Dr. Ann Carter from Relay Health found that this particular cancer, “is a growth of abnormal white blood cells that form tumors in the lymph system,” according to “Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma” by Dr. Anne Carter, of the Sentosa Medical Center. Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma is the sixth most common cancer in males and seventh most common cancer in females. This is very common, so I believe that some people may survive and some may not. Rates for males tend to be higher than females in this disease. Even though rates are higher in males, anyone can get it.

The incident of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma increases with age. There were about 69,740 people in the United States that were expected to be diagnosed with this in 2013, according to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. These are, in my opinion, too many people with cancer.

Lymphoma begins in the lymph nodes and lymph nodes are a part of the circulation and infection fighting systems. If this part of the body gets infected, it will be hard to stay healthy and not sick. These lymph nodes carry away waste that is removed through the liver and kidneys. The lymphatic system creates anti-bodies and white blood cells that fight unknown viruses and bacteria so when the disease hits the system, it cannot fight back, so you grow weak. The disease can spread to almost any part of the body, which makes it more dangerous. Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma is more common than Hodgkin, according to Carter.

I bet you that you did not know most of this. Now you do know how common this cancer is and how it affects your system. Please take a stand and make a change. You may think one person cannot do much, but if we all come together we can make a change and help the future, and people like my grandmother. We can create charities, walks, programs, and etc. I just need help. Please help me. I do not want to see more people like my grandmother. Consider donating to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Khushali Patel

Brookline

Carter, Ann MD. “Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.” Sentosa Medical Center. 4 August 2011. Web. 13 March 2014.

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. 19August 2013. Web. 3 March 2014.