Become The Hero of Your Life

Become The Hero of Your Life
August 3, 2017
In the interview to “BB” charming Nathalie Cunin, co-founder and president of Cancer Organisation Soutien, told us about how to get over the disease and to create a successful company that helps cancer patients from around the world to receive treatment by the best French specialists.

– Nathalie, could you tell us, what did your company begin with? How did you come up with the idea to found it? 

– I came up with the idea to create COS after I had survived  cancer myself. In March 2014, when I was 43 and held a senior management position in an international company in France, I was diagnosed with a 3-stage cancer of the most aggressive form. But I decided to not give up and continued to work. I told nothing neither to my chiefs, nor to the clients and let alone to my children. I decided to live as I had always lived before and to enjoy my life. 
I was overtaken by the oncological disease which befalls mostly female members of my family in a more and more young age. I expected it and I was ready to fight against it. Still, I had to look for and try different ways that would allow me to remain active, hide scars, cope with nausea, insomnia, muddiness of mind, loss of hair… and the list may go on and on. 

I spent many evenings, studying on the Internet the information about where one may get help and assistance. Thus, I didn’t notice myself how I made the list of best specialists in Paris and its suburbs. But at first, like many other cancer patients, I was confused and wasted a lot of time in vain. I had consultations with specialists who were indifferent to my disease and were interested only in making 
money out of me. I took unsuitable medicines. Besides, I also read frightening stories of other patients in the Internet. It is seldom that those who manage to overcome the disease tell about the positive moments of their treatment.

That is why I decided to create the company that would help people escape such difficulties. Now together with our clients and for them we develop the program of individual support, offering the most effective solutions to our patients. We want a cancer patient to concentrate on him/herself and on his/her recuperation to the maximal possible extent. 

Our network consists of 150 best oncology specialists of France in different types of cancerous tumors. Cooperating with advanced medical establishments, we are able to furnish to our patients the results of examinations as early as within 48-72 hours. In case patients undergo X-ray therapy, chemotherapy or hormonal therapy, we refer them to an acupuncture specialist in the sphere of oncology. This specialist helps to stabilize metabolism and to reduce such side effects of treatment, as vomiting, diarrhea, loss of hair, bone pains, etc.

It is thanks to acupuncture sessions that I managed to avoid being on a sick leave. Homeopathy specialist helps the liver of the patient to get rid of toxic substances, received in the course of chemotherapy, as quickly as possible. Nutrition specialist develops the healthy nutrition program. If needed, we also offer hair prosthesis of the highest quality. 

And, certainly, we take on the maintaining of the patient’s administrative file – patient record. Thus, we relieve the patient from the paperwork and red tape. We save all the necessary documents for the patient on a memory stick, so that he/she at any moment could furnish them to the specialist. Our interpreters may accompany a foreign patient to any and all appointments with doctors and organize all the required logistics and transportation for the patient.

– France is a relatively new medical destination for Russians. What advantages of French medicine can you point out? 

– I think it will be interesting for you to know, that unlike their colleagues from other countries, French doctors in accordance with the laws have no right to advertise their services or to tell about themselves in the media. And it is sad, because French medicine is one of the best in the world. 

All specialists, with whom we cooperate, are top-ranking professionals with enormous experience. Among them there are many doctors pursuing a career in science. It is French doctors who were trailblazers in many areas of medicine. And today they work on the highest level, practically on a par with American colleagues and significantly ahead of German and British specialists. In particular, this refers to spine surgery, facial reconstruction, stenting, surgical interference and breast reconstruction in case of a cancerous tumour. And we can say in all modesty, that the patient is not taken aback with the cost of services of our doctors. 

For example, among our partners we have a neurosurgical center, which is well-known in Paris and uses unique equipment in its work. We also partner with the best X-ray therapy specialists. They use state of the art and cutting-edge radiosurgical systems Gamma Knife and Cyberknife in their work. These systems allow a reduction in the number of X-ray therapy sessions.

– How can patients from Russia make it to you?  

– One should just go to our web-site, which is complete with a Russian version. And one may ask any question in the section “Request an appointment”. We’ll reply within a very short time and we’ll discuss the possibility of your arrival with you. Our office is located not far from the Arc de Triomphe. At the wish of our patients, we also arrange and book any type of accommodation for them. Our specialists in radiotherapy and oncology may make preliminary analysis of the patient’s medical file-record. All messages are sent via our safe server, and we guarantee absolute confidentiality. 

– Among the services you offer, there are those that are seemingly not related to oncology. Why did you include them into the treatment program? 

– Indeed, we offer a whole range of services, aimed not only at treatment of the disease as such, but also at fighting against side effects, which deteriorate the quality of life and morale of the patient. 
For example, acupuncture sessions stimulate the immune system and energy potential of the person, helping to support the life energy in the course of chemotherapy and to eliminate the risk of emergence of metastasis and secondary tumours. After surgical interference we refer our patients to professionals in kinesiotherapy and osteopathy, specializing in the  sphere of oncology. Nutrition of the patient is also one of our focus areas, because loss of taste, mouth and abdomen pains, as well as weight gain become a real nightmare for the patient. Our nutrition specialists develop an individual nutrition program for each patient.
We partner with experienced coaches, having specialization “Sport and cancer”. Recent research shows, that regular exercise helps to reduce the risk of occurrence of breast cancer for 20%, and the risk of re-emergence of cancerous tumour is reduced for 20% in case of 3 hours of exercise a week, and for 50% - in case of 9 hours of exercise. Besides, we offer thalassotherapy sessions in specialized SPA-centers to our patients. Our partners use the products, that were specially developed by La Roche Posay and Aerial laboratories for cancer patients’ skin care.   

– Nathalie, what advice can you give to those who have just learnt about the distressing diagnosis? 

– First of all, you should keep in mind, that the term “cancerous tumour” is not the synonym of death. Many types of cancerous tumours are already curable. This sphere has experienced an enormous progress within the last 15 years. Besides, using immunotherapy gives real hope for recovery. That being said,  WHO (World Health Organization) forecasts the 70%  increase in the number of cases of cancerous tumors within the next 20 years. So, the disease may affect every other man and every third woman. And we have to accept this reality and deal with it. 

That is why one needs to keep cool and find out as much as possible about the methods of treatment. One should absolutely keep clear of reading different blogs. Comments written there often just spread panic and don’t correspond to reality. Each patient, each cancerous tumour, each method of treatment is individual and unique in its own way. It is only using such an approach to the disease that we may become the actors, and not just spectators in relation to the disease. No doubt, a positive approach to life and good physical shape are excellent allies in our fight against the disease.

Surely, the sense of anxiety is unavoidable. But one should get accustomed to it and learn to harness it at any moment of time. The only aim of the patient is to live on and to turn over this dark page of life as quickly as possible. COS, for its part, is ready to reply any and all your questions, take you by the hand, refer you to the best specialists and relieve you of unnecessary doubts. We’ll do everything possible to organize and carry out the treatment process of our patients in the most efficient and effective way.

(+33) 1 40 59 41 81;
12 Avenue de la Grande Armée 75017 Paris