AprMay 2023: Speaking truth about your diagnosis

Welcome to another packed edition of Buddies. As Henry David Thoreau said, “It takes two to speak the truth, one to speak and another to hear” so please read. 

The theme of Speaking truth is really dear to my heart right now. Chief Joseph said, “It does not require many words to speak the truth” and as I was just told by a patient that she couldn’t see me as I was on pension, I realised again the importance of checking sources when going through a traumatic event like a cancer diagnosis. There is a vulnerability in having cancer and as clinicians we should realise that “The only way to speak the truth is to speak it lovingly”; more wise words from Henry David Thoreau. 

Thanks to our Super Survivor, Lee-ann Goliath, read and listen to her story; as Thomas Jefferson said, “Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” 

I’m so pleased that Paget’s disease is discussed (one of the cancers that is often not detected early enough). Read about diet and lifestyle improvements we can make, that means all of us, keeping in mind Arthur Schopenhauer’s words, “Life is short, and truth works far and lives long: let us speak the truth.”

So, let’s practise what Genie from Aladdin said, “Tell her the truth” and may our wishes and dreams come true. 

To our Buddies here and there, come and gone: “The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.”

Your Buddie For Life
Prof Carol-Ann Benn

Photo by Antoinette van Staden Photography | Follow on Facebook & Instagram

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Hair: Caroline’s Hair and Beauty


Lee-ann Goliath – Finally facing the truth

Lee-ann Goliath speaks openly about how she was in complete denial when diagnosed with breast ...


The clumsy side effect

Do you often feel that cancer treatment has made you clumsier? Gabriella Kourie gives a ...

Ditch the workout, join the party!

Antoinette van Staden, a licensed Zumba instructor, highlights the many enticements of joining the Zumba ...

Processed and smoked meats – No go

Meagan Atcheson explains why those tasty smoked meats are actually harmful to your body and ...


Breast cancer memoirs

What motivates breast cancer survivors to write memoirs? We chat to Gail Gilbride Bohle and Dr ...

Penny Naidoo – Red devil saved my life

Penny Naidoo was diagnosed with Paget’s disease of the nipple, a form of breast cancer. ...

Emotional strength from the floral kingdom

Fiona Hardie educates us on Bach flower remedies and how these natural essences help you ...

BHF News AprMay 2023

Bags full of care and encouragement

Great Domaines and FPM donated hand-painted tote bags filled with much-needed surgery and chemotherapy care ...

Paget’s disease of the nipple – what lies beneath

Dr Lucienne Van Schalkwyk educates us on the signs and symptoms of Paget’s disease of ...


How your lower brain chatter affects your pain

Did you know your lower brain chatter can affect the amount of pain you feel? ...

Cryoablation – then and now

Dr Cassandra Mbanje shares the history and development of cryoablation and how modern-day cryoablation fits ...

Immunotherapy – your defence against dark arts

Prof Carol-Ann Benn takes us into the wizarding world of immunotherapy spells and the wonder ...


The importance of sound nutrition after a cancer diagnosis

Dietitian, Berna Harmse, educates us on nutritional status and the outcome of cancer, and offers tips for nausea. Read more here.

Jocelyn Moodley shares her story of how an incredible team of doctors removed her salivary gland cancer leaving no facial scarring in My miracle surgery.

Word For Word Media are pleased to present The 2023 Big C Survivor’s Guide, with the focus being the top five cancers
in South African women and men
. We have also included the top five cancers affecting children. To all the survivors, our hope is that this booklet will assist in your journey, no matter how big or small, as long as you know you are not alone; we are here for you, we are oncology buddies.