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Charlotte Mom Fights Disease, Now Wants a Cure for Sarcoma

Written by Addie Rising    on September 21, 2017

You're active. You're a mom. And then you get diagnosed with cancer. You begin treatments and yes, you lose your hair.

In October 2015, Julia McGrath was diagnosed with sarcoma, a cancer of the bone or connective tissue, such as nerves, muscles, cartilage, tendons, fat, and blood vessels.  She underwent surgery and her chemo treatments began in November 2015.

Julia McGrath“My kids didn’t want anyone to know," McGrath said. "I wore scarves and maybe people knew. Allowing people to see my hair was such a focal point. It was a moment for me to let go and end the shame of losing my hair.”

McGrath's treatments ended in February 2016.

"I got it early and I got it out through surgery,” McGrath said.

But her journey has not ended. 

“I don’t like that people would rather fight the disease than find the cure," McGrath said. "The Paula Takacs Foundation for Sarcoma Research is proactive to find a cure.”

In April 2016, McGrath put together a team (see picture below) for The Sarcoma Stomp 5K to support The Paula Takacs Foundation which invests donations in sarcoma research and clinical trials being conducted at Levine Cancer Institute.

Sarcoma is one of the rare cancers. There are over 150 subtypes of sarcoma, with each having a distinctly different genetic makeup.  Sarcomas comprise less than 1 percent of adult cancers and 15 percent of pediatric cancers.  Approximately 15,000 individuals are diagnosed with bone or soft-tissue sarcoma in the U.S. each year.

“If people are looking for a way to make a difference, they should help the organizations supporting lesser-known cancers," McGrath said. "Research done for sarcoma can have an impact on all cancers.  The Paula Takacs Foundation is quietly behind the scenes doing amazing work supporting research and clinical trials."

Photos courtesy Julia McGrath