2 people side by side at a wooden table, one working on a laptop the other writing in a notebook. Only their hands are visible.

4 Reasons Survivors and Families May Not Participate in Retinoblastoma Research, and Ways to Improve Engagement.

Survivor participation in retinoblastoma research is key to understanding long-term impacts of the cancer, and improving care. But many barriers to participation exist Len Burns, a blind bilateral Rb survivor and licensed family therapist, considers four major barriers, and opportunities to overcome them.

This image features two pieces of text, above and below an image of a stick family, ranged in order of height from the tall father through mother and various children to the family dog. Above: “When a child is diagnosed with cancer, the whole family is affected.” A gold ribbon sits behind the word “diagnosed”. Below the family: “Please support a local family in your community who has a child battling for their life. Bold for gold! Childhood cancer awareness and hope.”

Talking About Your Child’s Cancer Diagnosis With Family and Friends

Talking about a child’s cancer with family and friends can be deeply cathartic for parents one day, and utterly exhausting the next. Asking for and receiving help can be a minefield too. Morgan Livingstone CCLS explores why this is so, and offers tips and tools to reduce stress, improve coping and boost effective practical support.

Statue of a blind girl sitting on a plinth, leaning against a post in contemplation while reading a book balanced on her knees and one hand.

Father Braille: A Wonderfully Dotty Relationship

For many individuals diagnosed with retinoblastoma, sight-loss means braille is the primary means of reading and writing. In celebration of World Braille Day on Friday January 4th, Rb survivor Ffion Miles introduces us to a very special relationship she has with six tiny dots, and the marvellous adventures they’ve shared together.

Artistic tree in white and gold ribbon on red background, surrounded by snow and tiny and large snowflakes. Below, a wave of opaque white ribbon flows across the image.

Our 2018 Blog Year in Review

The WE C Hope blog has been busy in 2018. We’ve shared 24 posts from 17 authors – parents, survivors, researchers or professionals providing retinoblastoma-related care. Each has brought valuable experience, knowledge and perspective, and we are very thankful to them all. Here is a recap of posts we’ve shared in the past 12 months.

a baby plays with an anaesthetic mask

10 Commonly Confused Retinoblastoma Terms, What They Mean and Why Getting Them Right Matters.

Do you know the difference between a biopsy and pathology, or an RB1 gene deletion and Chromosome 13q deletion? Do you know how a retinoma becomes retinoblastoma or when remission becomes cure? In Part 2 of a mini-series, WE C Hope CEO Abby White explains these and other terms, and why using them correctly is important.

A baby has a squint - the right eye is rutned in towards the nose.

8 Commonly Confused Retinoblastoma Terms, What They Mean and Why Getting Them Right Matters.

Do you know the difference between lazy eye and squint, or an ocular oncologist and a paediatric oncologist? Do you know when extraocular Rb becomes metastatic, or why trilateral Rb is neither of these? In Part 1 of a mini-series, WE C Hope CEO Abby White explains these and other terms, and why using them correctly is important.

Workshop attendees gather for a group photo.

Shaping Retinoblastoma Research Development Through Patient Engagement

Parents and survivors have valuable lived experience that can shape retinoblastoma research to improve health outcomes. Kaitlyn Flegg reviews progress of the innovative Canadian Retinoblastoma Research Advisory Board, where parent and survivor priorities are setting the research agenda.

Destigmatizing Vision Loss Within the Retinoblastoma Community

Vision loss is a major part of the retinoblastoma experience, but rarely discussed in depth within our community. Sassy Outwater-Wright explores the trauma of vision loss, the experience of living with reduced or no sight, and pathways to living well at every age and stage of sight-loss.

Damian

Always Life Before Eye – So Why Are Curable Children Dying?

Progress of eye-saving treatments for retinoblastoma is very exciting, but an increasing number of curable children are developing metastatic relapse and dying after eye-salvage therapy. With parent experiences woven throughout, Retinoblastoma survivor Abby White, asks why this is happening and what can be done to prevent it.

View from a rollercoaster about to drop down steeply towards a river bathed in sunlight and surrounded by verdure.

The Retinoblastoma Rollercoaster

The rollercoaster ride is unexpected, wild and frightening when a child is diagnosed with retinoblastoma. The greatest comfort is knowing you are not alone on the journey. Lori Baños, creator and moderator of the Facebook group Rb Moms, reflects on the experience, with insightful contributions from group members.