We all have that moment when we think how things might have been different for us if something had happened either in the past or in the future and today, in the present, we remember Audrey Hepburn, actress, style icon and appendix cancer patient. Sadly, she passed away this day, January 20th in 1993 after being diagnosed with pseudomxyoma peritonei (PMP). All of us at Pseudomyxoma Survivor feel honoured to have Audrey’s, Sean, as our patron and are very grateful for his on-going guidance and support.
Dr Paul Sugarbaker, the surgeon who devised the procedure which is thought of today as the ‘gold standard’ of care for PMP patients, has said in an interview with the Diagnostic Detective that he believes she could be cured today.
It’s a sobering thought for us all and not just a reminder of how precious life is but also how precious instants in our lives are. As patients today, many of us are privileged to have access to the Sugarbaker technique in a timely manner and can look forward to a future with no evidence of disease. As Dr Sugarbaker says in the interview, “70% of patients are cured”. So we’re taking a moment today to remember Audrey, to remember those from our community we have lost and to remember those that don’t have access to cytoreductive surgery and HIPEC and to whom that statistic, 70%… are cured, doesn’t apply.