Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Partnership Helps Beat Cancer

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Partnership Helps Beat Cancer

Article excerpt

Byline: Gemma Westacott

LU CROSBY is one of the lucky ones, with a loving partner to care for her during her recent cancer treatment.

Her husband Brent was by her side for every chemotherapy treatment and doctor's appointment, as a crucial source of support that may well have helped save her life.

According to research by Cancer Council Queensland and the Queensland University of Technology, cancer patients with partners have a much greater chance of survival.

A study, which examined 176,050 cases of the 10 leading cancers in Queensland, found that male and female cancer patients who were single at diagnosis were more likely to die within 10 years than those with a partner, regardless of the type of cancer.

In fact, the chance of death was 26% higher for single men and 20% higher for single women compared with their partnered counterparts.

They are statistics that the Crosbys can understand, after they were struck another blow in April last year when Lu was diagnosed with breast cancer.

The inspirational family behind the charity group Team Adem, had been soldiering on after they lost their 19-year-old son Adem to acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in May 2013.

Lu, who has now completed her chemotherapy treatment, said: "If you didn't have a partner it would be really hard. With chemo, you can spend up to a week afterwards just lying on the couch."

She highlighted how Brent had helped with their children, meal preparation, her medication, driven her to and from appointments, and just been there for her emotionally and mentally.

This compared to many others without support, such as "single mothers who go home after (chemo) and cook dinner for their kids" or "a little old lady sat next to me at Nambour Hospital who caught the bus home afterward," Lu said.

But the Crosbys said there was a wealth of support services on the Sunshine Coast, such as Bloomhill Cancer Care, if people just reached out. …

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