Head/Neck Cancer A Hard Thing To Swallow

October 1, 2021
by Alexei Roschak

Head/Neck Cancer is a devastating diagnosis. Treatment is very difficult, but the disease is curable. However, many are left with a lifetime of side effects that impact their quality of life. Imagine not being able to eat or drink by mouth and having to rely on a tube in your stomach for your nutrition. Having altered taste, chronic dry mouth putting you at risk for tooth decay, changes to voice and articulation. Our patients often undergo major reconstructive surgery that alters anatomy and can change appearance. There is life after head/neck cancer treatments and patients reach a level of a “new normal”. Many of our patients face co-pays for therapy that they cannot afford, as well as other out of pocket expenses for nutrition, compression garments, dental needs, as well as so many other services/items. The Head/Neck Cancer A Hard Thing To Swallow 5K run/2 mile walk was created 9 years ago as a way to raise awareness as well as raise funds to provide financial assistance to patients here in Southwest Florida.

2021 brought many challenges with Covid-19 but we were given the green light to host the 9th annual 5k run/2 mile walk with Covid restrictions in place. It was a year of firsts for us. First time hosting the event at Jaycee Park in Cape Coral FL. First time hosting a virtual option to the event. First time hosting an event with limits on the number of participants, mask requirements, and social distancing of vendors. Despite so many restrictions, we knocked it out of the park with a great event. Over 300 participants and $40,000 raised for our patients in SWFL.

We look forward to our 10th anniversary in 2022. We are proud to start a national movement. Join us April 30, 2022, as we take our 5k run/2 mile walk on the national scene. We will be hosting the event at several locations around the country which will enable us to raise awareness of Head/Neck Cancer on the national level as well as be able to provide financial assistance to so many more patients. We will be keeping our virtual option as well. This is such an exciting time and we can’t wait for all of you to join us in person or virtually and help us continue to make a difference in the lives of Head/Neck Cancer patients.

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