Bob Riter

Important to Accommodate Vacations in Chemo Schedule

Posted June 22nd, 2015

Oncologists see the benefits of accommodating vacations in a cancer patient’s chemotherapy schedule. Accommodations in the treatment schedule are sometimes possible and appropriate.


Bob Riter

Head and neck cancers present special challenges

Posted June 5th, 2015

Treatment for head and neck cancers is tough, since talking, swallowing and breathing are affected.


Bob Riter

Ringing the Bell

Posted May 21st, 2015

When patients finish their last round of chemotherapy, there is often the ritual of ringing the bell. Everyone cheers. It’s a good feeling.


Bob Riter

Living with more than one type of cancer

Posted May 8th, 2015

Ithaca resident Skip Hewitt was diagnosed with leukemia in 2004, bladder cancer in 2009, and lymphoma in 2011. He told me, “When I was diagnosed with my first cancer, I cried. When I was diagnosed with my second cancer, I cried again. When I was diagnosed with my third cancer, I was just pissed off.” […]


Bob Riter

Advice for the College Student Who has a Parent with Cancer

Posted April 24th, 2015

There are thousands of college students in Ithaca and quite a few have a parent living with cancer.


Bob Riter

Send a card: A gesture that makes a difference

Posted April 14th, 2015

How can you help a friend who has cancer? Send a card.


Bob Riter

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Chemo

Posted March 24th, 2015

Visitors to the Cancer Resource Center are sometimes startled to hear uproarious laughter coming from behind doors. When the visitor raises a questioning eyebrow, we respond, “Oh, that’s one of our support groups. They laugh a lot.” People expect our groups to be somber. Cancer is difficult, and there are meetings filled with concern and […]


Bob Riter

How to Help a Cancer Patient’s Caregiver

Posted March 5th, 2015

I often write columns that suggest ways that caregivers can help the person with cancer. Today, I want to suggest ways that the rest of us can help the caregiver. I’m defining caregiver as the person most involved in supporting the patient. It’s typically a spouse, child, parent, sibling, or friend. This is the person […]


Bob Riter

Caregiving Friends May Need a Break

Posted February 20th, 2015

I received a call last week that went something like this: “My friend has cancer and she wants me to visit on a regular basis. When I do visit, all she does is complain about how awful her life is. I dread these visits and go only because I feel guilty if I don’t. I […]


Bob Riter

Cancer and the Holidays

Posted December 17th, 2014

The first few months of living with cancer are weird. This sensation is even more intense during the holiday season.