Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Ependymoma Awareness Day: April 18, 2013

One of my favorite cancer fighting efforts is Ependymoma Awareness day. That's the day when The CERN Foundation releases a gazillion butterflies, bought butterfly by butterfly, as a fund-raiser to support research to fight this deadly disease?

So what’s Ependymoma? Here’s some Ependymoma Fast Facts

  • An ependymoma is a rare type of primary brain or spinal cord tumor
  • An ependymoma is a rare type of glial tumor; glial cells are the supportive cells of the brain
  • Primary brain and spinal cord tumors are those that start in the central nervous system (CNS)
  • These tumors are classified and graded according to their appearance when viewed through the microscope
  • Ependymomas can be found in children and adults

While the facts are enlightening, I also find them somewhat dry.  So I went to the “inspiration” section of the CERN Foundation website - – and read some very human, especially touching and particularly poignant stories about kids and adults fighting a seemingly relentless, horrible disease.  Spoiler alert: these aren’t dry facts. They are moist-eye stories: stories with heart, stories about brave kids and parents, and far too many stories with sad endings.

Why butterflies?

As the CERN Foundation spokesperson said last year, “To represent renewal, inspiration and hope.” 

If you pledged last year, please renew your pledge again this year.  I have.

Image credit: <a href=''>cheryledavis / 123RF Stock Photo</a>

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