We Asked…

We Asked…

We asked readers on social media and in our weekly newsletter to share their thoughts about their most worrisome health concerns. What is one disease or medical issue for which you would most like to see a cure?


Ovarian cancer. I have lost two friends to this horrible disease. The time between diagnosis and death for my two friends was a total of four weeks. —Elizabeth C. Birch, founder & CEO, Home Care Angels II


Cancer.Loretta Facchini, Riverwoods, Illinois


Hashimoto’s disease, because it affects so many people, and they have to manage daily symptoms.” —Beth Comer, Westlake, Ohio


I would like to see a cure for Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. These two diseases rob you of quality of life and the quality of life of the people who live with and care for you. With cancer and cardiac issues, there is downtime due to procedures, surgery, or treatments, but you do have time then to enjoy being out with family and friends and doing daily activities. Just my thoughts after 47 years in healthcare. —Margie Brandt, Vernon Hills, Illinois


Pancreatic cancer. I’ve lost loved ones. Most patients don’t stand a chance. —Anonymous


Eradication of all diseases that take loved ones from their families too soon would be ideal. If I have to choose, there is an inherent cruelty about ALS and Alzheimers that forces me to prioritize finding their cure.

For each, whether the progression is slow or swift, both the patient and their loved ones are devastated. ALS typically traps an otherwise vibrant, healthy person in an degenerating body while the person remains 100% mentally present. Alzheimer’s does almost the exact opposite — trapping a vibrant, healthy person in a degenerating mind, removing the memories of a life well lived until they are 100% not present.

In addition to patient suffering, the pain of not knowing how much the ALS person is aware of hurts loved ones in an inhumane way. Experiencing the Alzheimer’s person forgetting you — their parents, children, and happiest moments while standing before you seemingly normal is diabolical. I will never forget the fear in my grandmother’s eyes when she forgot who I was and thought I was there to hurt her. Both she and I were inconsolable. I hope a cure for both diseases happens in my lifetime. Toni Midderhoff Miller, marketing and brand specialist


Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. —Nancy Rainwater, vice president of communications, Alzheimer’s Association


Crohn’s disease, because I have it, and there’s no cure. It affects the entire body.Karen Hunter, senior transition specialist, KW Inspire


Dementia in general! Jan Steiner, founder, Senior Transitions Concierge


Pancreatic cancer. I’ve lost several friends way too young. —Carrie Lisy-Chavez, business development manager, Senior Helpers


Diabetes and cholesterol. Lifestyle/body mass changes which prove to be difficult to achieve or maintain in our western culture.Leonard Sanchez, owner/COO, Brightstar Care of DuPage, Wheaton, Illinois


Thyroid disease — hypo, in particular. I’ve had it for a number of years, and it can have some debilitating effects on the body in various ways if not diagnosed, dealt with, and monitored. —Jayne Miller, Downers Grove, Illinois


Breast cancer.Liz Starman, director of sales and marketing, Addolorata Villa-Franciscan Communities


Heart disease — triple bypass nine years ago, out of the blue…. Rick Graffagna, owner, Senior Solutions


Alzheimer’s disease. My mom had it. She was in the Rush program and donated her brain to their program. What, if anything, did they learn from mom’s brain? Alzheimer’s and other dementias cause family to say goodbye to their loved one twice. The only good thing in all of it was that our mom remained her happy self. That made it easier on us kids. Kerry Quirin, senior living advisor, Senior Living Experts


Originally published in the Spring/Summer 2024 print issue.