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A night of hope and inspiration

A forum on advancements in fighting cancer
Posted at 10:32 PM, Oct 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-18 23:27:46-04

ESSEX, Md. — Cancer is something you never want to have to think about fighting or looking for.

The reality is more than 33,000 Marylanders will be diagnosed with cancer this year.

A night of hope and inspiration

It was a night of hope for medical breakthroughs and inspired strength in a community with a common goal.

“It’s obviously not a light topic, it is a very serious topic,” said Karen Wynn.

Several of Wynn’s family members have battled cancer, and she was encouraged by the events openness about the topic.

"Doctors are becoming more personal and I think that really helps the patients and trying to make people more informed of what their options are and early screening.”

Metzger brought in an orchestra and young performers to break up the moments of serious conversation with entertainment.

“You lift each other up, there’s hope in that,” Metzger said. “Tonight, I’ve got the young people that are going to hear these hope breakthroughs. We’ve got the orchestra they are going to be able to hear it.”

Dr. Pallavi Kumar is the Director of Immuno-Oncology at Medstar Health Cancer Network. Kumar talked about immunotherapy which utilizes your own immune systems to target cancer.

“What we’re seeing is for patients that used to have advanced disease sometimes would be 12 months which would be so scary to the patient. Now we’re seeing patients really surviving beyond ten years.”

Dr. Suman Rao is the Director of Thoracic Oncology at Medstar Franklin Medical Center.

Rao discussed the importance of early detection.

“It’s not always about patients who have already been diagnosed. We want to talk about breast cancer screening making sure they stay on top of that,” said Rao. “Cervical cancer screening, making sure they stay on top of getting vaccines for cervical cancer.”

To learn more about the Medstar Cancer Institute click here.