By Jacie Scott
Today, I’m adding a splash of purple into my wardrobe. (This is pretty huge for me because my closet doesn’t know what color looks like.) So why TODAY of all days, you ask? I have three reasons:
- Today is World Pancreatic Cancer Day, and purple is the color for pancreatic cancer awareness. Pancreatic cancer has the lowest survival rate of all major cancers and the 7th most common cause of cancer-related deaths in men and women worldwide.
“It is estimated that by 2020, this figure will increase to 418,000 new case globally.” – World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition
- The overall five-year survival rate of pancreatic cancer is between 2-10 percent. That’s a very small percentage. The cause of most pancreatic cancers is unknown and symptoms could easily be attributed to other health conditions. Spreading awareness encourages more research and conversation about this deadly disease, which can increase early detection.
“Patients diagnosed in time for surgery are more likely to live five years and beyond.” – World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition
- This month ten years ago, doctors at MD Anderson Cancer Center told my mother there was nothing more that could do for her. She was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 1993, about two months pregnant with my younger sister. Her tumors were slow growing, and she lived with the disease well past the five-year mark. And three years past the date she was dismissed from MD Anderson. Mom bravely and elegantly (only she could pull that off) battled this horrible disease for 16 years.
“SIXTEEN YEARS, YALL! THAT’S UNHEARD OF!” – Jacie Scott
Mom’s strength, determination and faith during her battle are the reasons why I’ve joined the battle against the dismal outlook of pancreatic cancer. I believe we can change the statistics, which is why I started a nonprofit in her honor: Declare HOPE.
Mom’s compassion for others is what fuels my passion to help those who are going through it. Because I know from experience that it’s a hard time for patients and family members, alike.
So, join me! Find some purple, wear it proud, and let’s change the future of pancreatic cancer.