I've written before about the metaphor of a "war on cancer" - not a phrase I find particularly helpful. One aspect of this "war" is that patients are seen as in a personal battle with the disease. They are in a fight with cancer - the disease is at war with them - and the weapons in that war are toxic treatments like chemotherapy, radiation and radical surgery. I don't think these are useful images and are more likely to inspire horror than hope.
I am reminded of all this by reading a really interesting blog post from a person with Li Fraumeni Syndrome and who currently has a rare form of cancer called Leiomyosarcoma,. The blog is called 'Always Look On The Bright Side...' - and the post on 'Fighting Cancer - A Personal View' is well worth a read.