DALLAS (KDAF) — To Recognize National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, we met with Shauna Rae, brain tumor survivor and star of TLC show I am Shauna Rae, and Dr. James Klosky, Director of Psychology at the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center of Children’s Health Care of Atlanta.
The impacts of surviving childhood cancer can be lifelong. Rae, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor at just 6 months old, shares her experience in battling cancer as a child and how it continues to affect her daily life as an adult.
“It’s important for the community to be involved in issues like this because there’s so much that comes with battling cancer,” Rae said. “It never ends after you survive. It continues to follow you. So we would not only break the stigmas that can come with cancer, but we need to help build empathy and help build rehabilitation for those survivors when they go back to everyday life.”
Though the majority of children with cancer achieve a cure, over 95 percent of survivors will experience at least one chronic health condition over the course of their life.
“There’s no question that a diagnosis of childhood cancer and subsequent treatment can be traumatic,” Klosky said. “But many of our survivors also report things like post traumatic growth and resiliency as a result of treatment, so promoting ideals such as tolerance, inclusion and acceptance, help survivors to best integrate with their communities after cancer treatment and resume their lives with as little disruption as possible.”