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A selection from:
Men,Women, and Prostate Cancer
Page 15

A case in point is that of U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole, who, after having his prostate cancer surgically removed in 1992, has campaigned so vigorously for prostate cancer awareness that he's become, in his own words, ''the prostate pinup boy.'' In relying on the primary woman in his life to deal with his cancer crisis. Dole was luckier than most men in one respect: He's married to the then head of the American Red Cross. So when he turned to his wife, Elizabeth Dole, for help, something he admitted to a People magazine reporter that he does ''instinctively'' anytime he's feeling ''stunned, pressured, or plain old sick,'' she could immediately call personal contacts in top medical centers around the country for advice.

Not all wives have such connections. As Dole has come to realize through his frequent talks in public forums, prostate cancer is an illness that ''strikes couples and families, not simply individuals'' and ''people are just hungry for information.''

In effect. Dole did for prostate cancer what former First Lady Betty Ford did almost two decades ago for breast cancer: brought it to the forefront of national attention and instilled among American men and women a desire for more and better materials on what to do about it. In the wake of Dole, other well-known men have also stepped forward to confirm the key role played by the women in their lives in dealing with their illness, and to plead for better patient-caregiver education. Among these men have been Len Dawson, Hall of Fame quarterback and television sportscaster, who admits that he would not even have had the checkup that discovered his cancer except for his wife's insistence; Jerry Lewis, comedian; Don Ameche, actor; Linus Pauling, scientist and two-time Nobel-prize winner; Frank Zappa, rock musician; Joseph Papp, theatrical producer; Robert Perm Warren, writer and the nation's first poet laureate; Roone Arledge, president of ABC news; John Paul Stevens, U.S. Supreme Court Justice; Jim Berry, nationally syndicated cartoonist; and Steven Ross, chairman of Time Warner.


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