Latina Warrior Beats Cancer, Saves Lives Through Education and Advocacy


Loriana and Gabriel

“The good news is, we can’t kill you trying to save you. You showed up fit to fight.” Still in shock of recent events, Loriana Hernandez-Aldama tried to process the words of world-renowned oncologist Dr. Mark Levis. In such a short period of time in January 2014, her life had completely changed. Just a few days earlier, Loriana, a married mother and TV news anchor with a successful career in Austin and Dallas, Texas, was excitedly working with her fertility doctor to have another baby. But a precautionary blood test before a traditional embryo transfer revealed a disheartening diagnosis of AML Leukemia, an aggressive blood cancer. At the advice of her doctor and healthcare connections, she kissed her then 2-year-old son, Gabriel, goodbye, and boarded a plane to Johns ...

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The Massive Need for Equitable Latino Representation in Clinical Trials


clinical trials latino family home volunteer

Latinos represent less than 10% of volunteers in cancer clinical trials. The lack of Latinos in clinical trials makes it harder for researchers to find treatments tailored for this group — which makes up 18.5% of the U.S. population and a diversity of heritages. This is why Drs. Amelie G. Ramirez and Patricia Chalela of UT Health San Antonio identified barriers and strategies to boost Latino representation in clinical trials in a new commentary in JCO Oncology Practice. It will take more than simply raising awareness of clinical trials to everyone. "To achieve equitable participation of Latinos and other underrepresented groups in clinical research, we need comprehensive approaches that address social and contextual barriers to participation," said Ramirez, leader of the ...

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La Necesidad Enorme de Tener una Representación Latina Equitativa en los Estudios Clínicos


clinical trials latino family home volunteer

Los latinos representan menos del 10% de los voluntarios en los estudios clínicos de cáncer (enlace en inglés). La falta de latinos en los estudios clínicos hace que sea más difícil para los investigadores encontrar tratamientos desarrollados específicamente para este grupo – que representa el 18.5% de la población de los Estados Unidos y una diversidad de culturas. Las doctoras Amelie G. Ramírez y Patricia Chalela de UT Health San Antonio identificaron barreras y estrategias para promover la representación latina en los estudios clínicos en un nuevo comentario (enlace en inglés) publicado en JCO Oncology Practice. Se necesitará más que simplemente aumentar el conocimiento sobre los estudios clínicos. "Para lograr la participación equitativa de los latinos y ...

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Men, Why Should You Get Screened for Cancer? Join This Webinar 6/9/22!



Unfortunately, Latino men have lower cancer screening rates than their White peers. Only 30% of Latino men received a PSA test for prostate cancer in the past year, compared to 37% of White men. Colorectal cancer screening was lower in Latinos (49%) than Whites (58%), too. To address this issue, you’re invited to join our webinar — Men, Why Should You Get Screened for Cancer? — at 2 p.m. CT on June 9, 2022. This Zoom webinar will feature guest speakers and patient advocates to help health care professionals and the Latino public understand the cultural and other barriers to screening, demystify screening tests, and share stories of Latino men's screening and cancer survival. This is the fourth webinar of a new series, “Let’s Address Health Equity Together.” The ...

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The Nitrate Nuisance in Drinking Water and Its Impact on Latinos


latino farmworker picking plants nitrate drinking water contaminationStrawberry Harvest in Central California

Rural Latinos and farmworkers in the US are disproportionately exposed to nitrate-contaminated drinking water. This health disparity stems from a larger issue of Latinos generally having less access to clean, safe drinking water in the US. Join us as Salud America! explores this rising health disparity through a three-part series on Latino drinking water contamination. Today we will tackle what nitrates are, how prevalent they are in Latino drinking water, and emerging efforts to promote safer water for Latinos and all people. Part 2 will address drinking water contamination at Superfund sites, its impact on Latinos, and current efforts to promote safer drinking water in these areas. Part 3 will focus on water insecurity in colonias and the US/Mexico border, and how we ...

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Tatiana Holanda: Cáncer No Es un Oponente, Sino un Maestro


Tatiana Holanda breast cancer survivor brazil san antonio

Por Tatiana Holanda Sobreviviente de cáncer brasileña en San Antonio No veo al cáncer como un oponente "Lo veo como un maestro". Esa es la frase que resume mi historia. A la edad de 33 años, luego de los exámenes, se detectó un bulto en la mama izquierda de 2 cm, en el examen de ultrasonido se clasificó como Birads 4 con indicación de biopsia. En junio de 2019, con el resultado en la mano, se confirmó que tenía cáncer de mama triple negativo. Al principio, desesperación, luego angustia y ansiedad. Hubo 40 días de espera entre el diagnóstico y el inicio del tratamiento. Tuve que sacar fuerzas de algún lado, en ese momento mi hijo Rafael tenía 1 año. Cuando descubrí la enfermedad, pensé: tanto le pedí a Dios un hijo y ¿qué voy a hacer ahora frente al ...

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Gregory Aune: The Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Bike Ride


greg aune Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Bike Ride bike ride event

Gregory Aune was 16 when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Aune spent a year enduring grueling treatment, losing over 70 pounds. But he survived. His experience motivated him to pursue a clinical career and help children with cancer. Today, Dr. Aune is an associate professor of pediatric hematology and oncology at the Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute (GCCRI) of UT Health San Antonio, on a mission to find new ways to help and heal patients. That's why he helped found the Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Bike Ride — to raise awareness of childhood cancer and support the mission of the GCCRI. The inaugural bike ride will take place at 8 a.m. CT on April 2, 2022, in Floresville, Texas, after having been postponed for two years due to COVID-19. REGISTER ...

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Salud Talks Episode 39: Prehabilitation and What It Means for Latinos 


saludtalks prehabilitation

Most of us know what rehabilitation is. It is care that can help you get back to normal or improve skills after a disease or injury.   Unfortunately, rehab only takes place retroactively—after there is an issue.   Prehabilitation, however, focuses on health before there is a problem.  Loriana Hernandez-Aldama, an Emmy award-winning journalist, author, and cancer survivor, calls prehabilitation the mental and physical preparation a person can take to achieve good health, from stress reduction to healthier eating.   Loriana Hernandez-Aldama joins the Salud Talks Podcast, Episode 39, to talk about the great need for prehabilitation to help Latinos stay healthy and ready to deal with disease.  LISTEN! WHAT: A #SaludTalks Podcast discussion about prehabilitation ...

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Latino Cancer: ¿Sabía Usted?



Latinos are a dynamic, diverse, rising population. But cancer threatens the future health of the U.S. Latino population. This is why our Salud America! team at the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at UT Health San Antonio created a new video, "Latino Cancer: ¿Sabía Usted? (Did You Know?)," to describe the state of Latino cancer disparities and highlight the inequities behind them. The video debuted at the 2022 Advancing the Science of Cancer in Latinos conference. "The conference helped focus on a key underlying issue – health equity. Health equity is where everyone has a fair, just opportunity to be their healthiest," said Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez, leader of the conference and director of Salud America! and the IHPR. "True change starts when we focus on solving ...

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