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Breast Cancer Awareness Month - published 16 Oct 2018

       Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Accounts from a Cancer survivor


Michelle Von Hoffmann, CDC Management Systems Coordinator is a

cancer survivor and an inspiration to many


We are two weeks into Breast Cancer Awareness month, a globally recognised initiative to educate and raise awareness on breast cancer and measures of treating and controlling the deadly disease.


Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide, accounting for an estimated 9.6 million deaths in 2018 (in the world). The most common cancer includes breast cancer with 2.09 million cases globally; this is according to a report issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO).


The annual Awareness campaigns are modelled around promoting more research and resources on methods of improving the lives of those who are diagnosed with the disease.


The CDC Management Systems Coordinator, Michelle Von Hoffmann, shares her journey as a cancer survivor and urges people to examine themselves regularly.


“This year marks the 5th anniversary of being cancer free. I was diagnosed with estrogen cancer, and I literally have no hormones left in my body. Initially I thought I could push my body just as hard as prior to treatment, work late, train hard, work under major stress and be fine. Those days are gone for good. I have learnt to say NO, which is exceptionally difficult as my personality always wants to rescue and help the world” she expressed.


She explains how the chronic illness gave birth to severe side effects, which presented a number of challenges in terms of balancing competing priorities in the work place. “I now suffer from vertigo due to the damage of small brain cells from chemo – this is a chemical imbalance where you have dizzy spells and can black out. When people are ill around me the chances of picking up the same illness is very high, as a result I take precautionary measures.”


She continued to mention how “combating cancer in the work place requires one to make time, even if it means walking away from your desk for a couple of minutes just to reset your mind-set”.


“As a cancer survivor I would urge the importance of getting used to a routine, which includes eating small meals throughout the day. Do not sit stagnant at your desk for 8 hours or more, this is to ensure that the lymphatic system is stimulated at all times, to prevent a build-up of toxins. Drink between 3 – 4 litres of reverse osmosis water daily (out of a glass bottle); avoid plastic as much as you can. Remember to have breakfast as soon as you wake up to stimulate your metabolism,” concludes Michelle.



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