Coming back to life
- Survivors of celebrities such as Sofia Vergara, Giuliana Rancic and Jane Fonda have all kicked off the post-vaccination summer festivities.
- Travel restrictions and mask mandates are being relaxed; more than 41% of the US population is fully vaccinated.
- For those who still question the safety of the vaccine, a top expert from the Mayo Clinic discusses some key questions with SurvivorNet: It’s safe for cancer patients, although it’s best to see your doctor for your individual medical situation, and no , it does not give you COVID.
The Roaring Twenties?
As a result of the pandemic, people around the world have been unable to see their loved ones for more than a year, especially elderly parents, grandparents, cancer survivors and others who are immunocompromised. But now that millions have been vaccinated, mask mandates are relaxed and life is steadily returning to normal… the travels, parties and social gatherings have begun!
🎬📺 Free Movies and Free TV Shows! 🎭🎬
Related: Breast Cancer Survivor Julia Louis-Dreyfus Says Cancer and the COVID-19 Pandemic Were ‘Strangely the Same’
Survivors of celebrities such as Sofia Vergara, Giuliana Rancic and Jane Fonda all kicked off the summer festivities after the vaccination, along with actress Kristen Bell, who lost her father-in-law to cancer.
Sofia Vergara, 48, threw a Memorial Day BBQ at her home with husband Joe Manganiello. “So ready for my favorite time of year! ready for sundresses, sunblock and [cocktail emojis].”
Vergara survived thyroid cancer. The America’s Got Talent In 2000, the judge accidentally found a lump in her neck. She had taken her son to be examined for diabetes early because her family has a history of the disease, which affects how your body uses blood sugar. “While we were there, the doctor also wanted to check me, and he found a lump on my neck,” she said Health.
Related: Thyroid Cancer Survivor Sofia Vergara Launches a COVID-19 Response Fund for Underserved Communities
The actress had no symptoms. She was treated with surgery to remove the tumor, followed by iodine radiation.
“When you go through something like that, it’s hard, but you learn a lot from it,” she said. “Your priorities change. You don’t sweat the little things. And it had a happy ending.”
Veteran e! Giuliana Rancic, red carpet host and breast cancer survivor, celebrated her husband Bill’s 50th last week in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico with friends and family.
Related: ‘I Just Fell Through the Darkness’ – Giuliana Rancic Talks About Her Journey to Breast Cancer
“Happy birthday to the love of my life @billrancic,” she wrote on Instagram along with multiple celebratory photos from their holiday celebration for the Chicago-born entrepreneur.
“You are the most loving, caring, adventurous, hilarious, super smart, honest, fiercely loyal man who is a rock for so many. Duke and I loved every second of celebrating you this birthday week. Here are 50 more babies…We love you so much today and always!!!”
Rancic was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011 and underwent a double mastectomy. The author and fashion designer also faced fertility issues. Luckily she had Bill by her side every step of the way, and now they have their beautiful son Duke, 8, to be thankful for. Fortunately, Giuliana had just frozen her eggs, and they were successful.
Related: Survivor Giuliana Rancic, 45, Found Her Breast Cancer After Mammogram During Fertility Treatment — Now She Has A Beautiful Boy
“I didn’t go through breast cancer alone,” Rancic told SurvivorNet in an earlier interview. “Bill was right there by my side. We went through it together.”
And that was also true when she had to choose whether to have a double mastectomy.
Related: ‘I’ll Swim Topless’: Comedian Tig Notaro on Owning Her New Body After Double Mastectomy
“We were at a really stressful point in the decision-making process and I knew something was up with her,” Bill told us. “I put a stop to it. I set her down and said, ‘Honey, I don’t care what you look like. I just need you for the next 50 years…I want to grow old with you.’”
Actress and activist Jane Fonda caught up with an elementary school friend, author Jill Schary, last weekend for a birthday party at the home of Jill’s son Jeremy Zimmer. Jeremy is the founder and head of United Talent Agency.
Related: Cancer survivor Jane Fonda still fit at age 83, works with trainer again: ‘I’m getting my muscles back, I didn’t think this could happen at my age!’
“Jill and I were friends in grade school and we’ve kept in touch,” the cancer survivor wrote. “It was so nice to catch up and meet her friends, many of whom are part of her writing workshop that now focuses on writers working on autobiographical issues. Jill is a great writer.”
“I’ve had a lot of cancer,” Fonda . said in an interview of British Vogue a few years ago, citing multiple fears of skin cancer. “I was a sun worshiper. When I have a day off, I often go to my skin doctor and have things cut off by a surgeon.” One of those cancers was on her lip.
Fonda is also a breast cancer survivor. The fitness guru announced the news in 2010 on her blog. “I was scared with non-invasive breast cancer, but it’s ALL OUT NOW!!!” She told fans how lucky she was and that they discovered the cancer early: “I want to thank my friends and fans who wrote beautiful letters. It meant a lot to me,” she says.
Related: Jane Fonda, 82, Can Still Rock a Sweat Headband in Throwback Workout Video; She is a strong breast cancer survivor
Fonda also told British Vogue that she had a mastectomy for the 2016 Golden Globes, when she was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in Youth. “I get out of the car and I have the strange white dress with all the ruffles? That’s because I had just had a mastectomy and I had to cover my bandages,” she said.
the right place actress Kristen Bell, 40, has been careful in her parents’ best interests over the course of the pandemic and hasn’t seen them in over a year, until now!
Related: Actor Kristen Bell honors cancer caregivers: ‘I know what it’s like to lose someone’
“I saw my parents for the first time in over a year. It was my dad’s birthday so we took him out for a nice dinner and he told me that since it was his birthday he definitely didn’t have to take off his mask for the pictures I wanted,” she wrote. Instagram with a photo of the three of them.
“I get my stubbornness from him,” she added. “Happy Birthday Dad. I’m so glad you’re mine.”
Bell is married to actor Dax Shepard. They have two daughters: Lincoln Bell, 8, and Delta Bell, 6. Bell was by Shepard and his family’s side when Dax lost his stepfather to prostate cancer in 2012.
While Bell was pregnant with their first child, Lincoln, Shepard shared an emotional moment as his father placed his hand on Wife Bell’s pregnant belly from his hospital bed, feeling his granddaughter’s energy he would never meet.
Related: Nothing stops prostate cancer survivor Elton John, 73, as he talks about post-COVID tour and empowering new musicians
“It was an amazing, incredible, perfectly timed surprise,” said Shepard. “She lifted her shirt and he put his hand on her swollen stomach. He left it there for the better part of an hour. He was smiling from ear to ear, sat contented, unable to compose a sentence but still able to connect with the new family member we were creating”
Unfortunately, they knew he wouldn’t make it to birth, but that didn’t stop him from connecting with their first child in that special way.
“It was an emotional and triumphant moment,” he said. “One I will never forget. When I live to be a thousand, I will still be in debt to my wife for giving him that final thrill.”
Getting the COVID vaccine
Millions of Americans are fully vaccinated: about 136 million, or 41.5% of the population.
The number of hospitalizations from COVID continues to fall, travel restrictions around the world are relaxed, and moving forward with a “newer” normal, i.e. life after COVID, is paramount for everyone.
For those still considering vaccination or have questions, SurvivorNet interviewed Vincent Rajkumar, a top doctor from the Mayo Clinic, who reviewed the top 5 COVID-related vaccine questions and explained why it’s important for cancer patients to get vaccinated.
1. Is the vaccine effective?
“These vaccines work. They work in preventing symptomatic COVID and they also work very well in preventing severe COVID,” Dr. Rajkumar told us. “The flu vaccine is actually not as effective as the coronavirus vaccines we have released. In general, flu vaccines work 60 -70% of the time per year and this varies per year.”
2. Is it safe for a cancer patient?
“It’s very safe and there’s no increased risk to you just because you have cancer,” explains Dr. Rajkumar out. “People being treated for cancer can talk to their doctor for personalized guidance on getting the vaccine.”
3. When should I get it if I am a cancer patient?
“As long as you feel good, go ahead with the vaccine when it’s offered to you. Sometimes, even on the same day, if you go to the clinic to get a small dose of chemotherapy and give them the vaccine, just get it, there’s really no big problem,” said Dr. Rajkumar. “The only people who we say put off for a month or two are patients who have had a stem cell transplant because we wiped everything out, and so you want to wait for some of the recovery to take place, so when you give the vaccine, they have an immune response.
4. Will getting the vaccine give me COVID?
The COVID-19 vaccine cannot and will not give you COVID-19. “There is no way anyone can get COVID from the vaccines,” he said.
5. Should I be concerned about mutated strains?
“These mutations occur because there are a lot of hosts that get COVID and the way to reduce the number of mutations is if we can increase the number of people vaccinated,” he explained. “The solution is always vaccines, vaccines, vaccines. You want to vaccinate as many people around the world as possible so that there aren’t enough hosts for the virus to mutate.”
What should blood cancer patients do after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine?
Learn more about SurvivorNet’s rigorous medical assessment process.