Oncology specialist Dr. Eugenio Galindo shares details of annual Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Awareness Day, organized by the Life Raft Group.
On Sunday, July 13, 2014, the Life Raft Group celebrated the very first global Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Awareness Day. The mission of the group is to enhance survival and quality of life for people living with a gastrointestinal stromal tumor diagnosis through patient-powered research, education, empowerment, and global advocacy efforts. Oncologist Dr. Eugenio Galindo takes a closer look at the awareness initiative.
“In 2013, the Life Raft Group launched its ‘Rare 13’ campaign, highlighting and drawing attention to the fact that 13 people are diagnosed with gastrointestinal stromal tumors in the United States every day,” explains Dr. Galindo. Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Awareness Day has been held annually, on July 13, each year since.
A gastrointestinal stromal tumor is a form of tumor which occurs in the digestive tract, such as the stomach or small intestine. “Gastrointestinal stromal tumors are most often diagnosed in patients aged over 40,” reveals Dr. Galindo, “but, occasionally, younger adults and children may also develop such tumors.”
Around 5,000 new cases of gastrointestinal stromal tumor, also known as gastrointestinal stromal neoplasm and gastrointestinal stromal sarcoma, are currently diagnosed each year in the United States. “Prognosis and treatment options vary depending upon how quickly the cancer cells are growing, the size of the tumor, whether it has spread, and whether it can be completely removed via surgery,” Dr. Eugenio Galindo explains.
In addition to surgery, three further options are commonly made available to patients. These are targeted therapy, supportive care, and what’s known as watchful waiting, according to Dr. Galindo.
Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Awareness Day 2019 will be held on Saturday, July 13.
Dr. Galindo has previously shared details of Oral Cancer Awareness Month in April, Skin Cancer Awareness Month in May, and National Cancer Survivors Day in June, held annually on the first Sunday of the month. July, meanwhile, also plays host to UV Safety Awareness Month, the goal of which is to spread the word about how vital protection from the harmful effects of UV rays really is, and the link between excessive UV exposure and skin cancer.
Later in the year, September marks National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, Childhood Cancer Month, Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month, and Leukemia and Lymphoma Awareness Month. Next, October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, while November marks Lung Cancer Awareness Month and Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, according to Dr. Galindo.
Dr. Eugenio Galindo is an experienced physician specializing in oncology, certified through the American Board of Internal Medicine. Dr. Galindo has served in the Rio Grande Valley area for almost three decades and is an active participant in bringing the latest in cancer treatment and screening to the southernmost tip of South Texas. Fluent in English and Spanish, Dr. Galindo has also authored several influential medical publications on the subject of oncology.
To learn more about Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Awareness Day and the Life Raft Group, visit https://liferaftgroup.org/about-gist-awareness-day/.