August 10, 2017 Update: Reminder – No August Meeting

August 10, 2017 Update: Just a reminder that we will not be having a meeting in August. We will be taking our traditional August meeting break. For our September meeting (Sept. 9) our speaker will be Dr. Sundar Jagannath from Mt. Sinai speaking about Minimal Residual Disease and liquid biopsies. Enjoy the rest of the summer, everyone. As the song says, See You In September!

Saturday July 8, 2017 – Open Discussion

Link

The next regular meeting of the PMMNG will be held on Saturday, July 8th, from 1:30 – 3:30 PM at the Ralston House. Christina Bach will be our facilitator for this open discussion. As you may recall Christina is an oncology social worker who has presented many times for our group. She works full time now for Oncolink and is an avid blogger on many topics of interest to the myeloma community. http://www.oncolink.org/blogs/author/christina/

Christina’s talks on insurance, disability and navigating the world of financial assistance have been among some of our most popular programs. Christina will lead a discussion on anything of interest to the group so bring your questions about survivorship, the emotional side of living with Myeloma, dealing with side-effects or anything which is challenging you.

Please bring a food item to share. As a reminder, we will not meet in August.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30-3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus).

The “official” start time for the meeting is 1:30, but feel free to come as early as 1:00 since we gather early and chat before meetings. This is an especially good opportunity for newcomers to meet current members and exchange information.

There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

 

Saturday June 10, 2017: Immunotherapy and its use in the treatment of multiple myeloma

Hello PMMNG Friends,

For our June 2017 meeting Dr. Jack Watkins from Bristol Myers Squibb will be speaking on immunotherapy and its use in the treatment of multiple myeloma. As you may know, immunotherapy is treatment that helps your immune system fight your cancer. (American Cancer Society’s definition of immunotherapy) It is a fast-moving area of research, especially for the treatment of multiple myeloma. In 2015 the first two immunotherapy agents – Darzalex™ (daratumumab, Genmab/Janssen) and Empliciti™ (elotuzumab, Bristol-Myers Squibb/AbbVie) – were approved by the FDA for use in treating relapsed /refractory patients. More immunotherapy agents are in the pipeline.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30-3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus).

The “official” start time for the meeting is 1:30, but feel free to come as early as 1:00 since we gather early and chat before meetings. This is an especially good opportunity for newcomers to meet current members and exchange information.

There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

 

Saturday May 13, 2017: Mindfulness & Yoga for Cancer Patients

Please note: our May meeting is on May 13, not May 6 as I originally posted. I screwed up big time on the date. Can I blame chemo brain? Mike Burns

Our May meeting will provide information on two activities that can be helpful to cancer patients (as well as to others). Our speakers will be Mara Wei from the Penn Mindfulness Program and Michelle Stortz, a certified Yoga instructor who works with people with cancer and chronic illnesses.

Mara Wai, M.Ed., began training in mindfulness in 2005 with the Penn Program for Mindfulness. Since 2012 she has taught the Penn foundation program and other introductory and advanced mindfulness programs. Mara is also the Associate Director and oversees program development and administration. Additionally, she is a mind-body coach and utilizes mindfulness and other mind-body tools with clients to support them to apply mind-body awareness in pursuit of life goals and in navigating challenges.

Michelle Stortz, C-IAYT, RYT500, MFA, is a certified yoga therapist specializing in yoga for cancer and chronic illness. She teaches in numerous medical settings throughout the Philadelphia area and augments this work with her studies in mindfulness/meditation, Somatics and Reiki.  She leads retreats and group classes and works with individuals in private sessions.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus).

The “official” start time for the meeting is 1:30, but feel free to come as early as 1:00 since we gather early and chat before meetings. This is an especially good opportunity for newcomers to meet current members and exchange information.

There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

May 14, 2016 Meeting – “Building Resiliency, Living with Uncertainty”

Hello PMMNG Friends,

In May our guest speaker will be Kava Schafer, MDiv, MA. The title of her presentation is “Building Resiliency, Living with Uncertainty.” Ms. Schafer is a non-denominational chaplain with the Abramson Cancer Center’s Palliative Care Program. She plans to present on ways of gaining control when living with myeloma, avoiding distress and coming to peace with dying. She is a compassionate speaker and listener who has helped many live with their severe, chronic illnesses with more peace within themselves.

Kava Schafer, MDiv, MA is the palliative care chaplain at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Kava received her MDiv from Harvard Divinity School. Holding a graduate degree in Holistic Spirituality and certified as a spiritual director, she incorporates holistic strategies in her accompaniment of people living with cancer. Chaplain Schafer is also a Reiki master. She has written numerous articles on the role of spirituality, healing, and the cancer experience. Her most recent article is titled: Death as Spiritual Teacher:  End-of-Life Lessons for the Living published in Presence:  an International Journal of Spiritual Direction, June 2011.  Kava also maintains a private practice as a spiritual director for individuals, couples and families.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus). There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

Newcomers are especially welcome.