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Posted: 9/2/2015 7:54:52 PM EDT
A few months ago one of my coworkers collapsed at work.  We got him transported to the hospital and didn't know what happened.  Unfortunately he was told it was brain cancer specifically Glioblastoma a very deadly brain cancer that is difficult to treat.  Surgery was performed to get most of the tumor out but there were parts that just could not be addressed.

He was able to return to work and is now wearing one of these units:

This thing blew my mind so I began reading about it.  Here's an excellent TED talk on how it works:

The research and technology that goes into something like this amazes me.  My coworker is a maintenance tech and is pretty much able to do everything he did before just now wearing the headgear and humping around something that weighs about the same as a laptop.  The biggest issue he's talked about is the way the unit is setup in the backpack the battery is against his back.  We put some bubble wrap in what I called the Camelbak space on the backpack (for spare batteries) and that provided a bit of insulation so his back didn't get so hot.  

This is a great guy who I pray this treatment is as effective as they say it is.  This guy went to the mall and was walking around with this unit on in a bookstore picking up books and then setting them down saying "boy, that was a good read" just messing with people.

Cancer sucks but that means you can't have fun kicking its ass.

Link Posted: 9/2/2015 7:57:05 PM EDT
Cool. Fuck cancer.
Link Posted: 9/2/2015 8:01:37 PM EDT
Regrettably, glioblastoma multiform is one of those terminal diagnoses.
Link Posted: 9/2/2015 8:03:38 PM EDT
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Regrettably, glioblastoma multiform is one of those terminal diagnoses.
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It's 100% fatal and painful at that

I'm glad I'm not involved with that anymore.
Link Posted: 9/2/2015 8:06:48 PM EDT
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Regrettably, glioblastoma multiform is one of those terminal diagnoses.
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Unfortunately this is still the case.  Technology has advanced quite a bit in medicine, but with this diagnosis, your outlook is pretty grim.  Months to live without treatment, to a couple years with aggressive treatment.  I lost an old friend to this.
Link Posted: 9/2/2015 8:20:32 PM EDT
My coworker understands the mortality and I just think it is awesome that tech like this exists to give him a chance or at least the hope of one and allows him to continue working while he still can.

He starts chemo again on Friday so he'll be doubled down on treatments.  Cancer in general friggin sucks; my mother is a two time survivor but a third is unlikely due to her age and other health complications.

Still, the advances we're making in treating things like this amaze me.

Link Posted: 9/2/2015 10:07:00 PM EDT
I'm old enough to remember when the term "cancer" was basically a death sentence.

Cancer treatment have improved by leaps and bounds, surgical procedures for cancer and other ailments the same.

The one thing I can say has stayed constant over all those years, is that when people give up, when they say "We'll I'm going to die.", they do so without much further delay.

It would be tough having a terminal untreatable cancer, I hope I never find out just how tough.
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