The number of people surviving cancer has significantly increased over the past 20 years. With survivorship, however, comes a different set of dayto- day challenges among some of these individuals. Besides learning how to return to a “new normal” life, many cancer survivors may still experience both physical and emotional side effects of the disease.
Michael Feuerstein, Ph.D., M.P.H., knows all about these challenges as he is a 15-year brain tumor survivor. In 2002, his world was turned upside down when he was diagnosed with anaplastic astrocytoma, a rare malignant brain tumor for which the cause is still unknown. He was at stage 3 and given three months to a year to live. Feuerstein underwent surgical resection, followed by maximum brain radiation treatment and 12 months of chemotherapy.
Now, Feuerstein has taken on a personal mission to help other survivors find resources that weren’t available when he was going through the same. Shortly after his diagnosis, he switched focus from clinical psychology to cancer survivorship. He has edited books for health care providers, co-wrote a book for survivors and created the Journal of Cancer Survivorship: Research and Practice, which is aimed at health care professionals who need to help patients after cancer diagnosis and primary treatment.