Idelle Davidson

Welcome. I hope you'll find the articles and stories here valuable. To begin, browse the LABELS index and check out reader favorites such as:

1) How Chemotherapy Changes the Way You Think
There you'll find my four-part series on how treatment affects your mind, including an introduction and a discussion of issues with executive functioning (planning ahead, multitasking, solving problems, etc.), information processing andword retrieval.

2) Research
You may be surprised to learn that scientists are finally beginning to connect the dots between chemotherapy and cognitive dysfunction.  Read about advances at the University of Rochester, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Indiana University and other institutions.

3) Ask the Experts
Doctors and others answer readers' questions about brain fog.

4) New York Times Consults Blog With Dr. Silverman
Dan Silverman responded to readers' questions in the New York Times about "chemo brain.'  Read a sampling of the questions and answers here or click on the link to the actual New York Times blog.

5) Is "Chemo Brain" A Disability Under the Americans With Disabilities Act?
Read my Q & A with attorney Joanna Morales of the Cancer Legal Resource Center and learn how you can protect yourself in the workplace.

6) Stories
For those of us who have traveled through cancer or are experiencing it now, how does sharing our stories help us find our way? The answer lies in validating each other's thoughts and feelings so that no one feels isolated. The answer lies in connection, in community.

My favorite story submitted by a reader is from Lori. Find it in the LABELS index under "I Appreciate Your Book." The first line of her note to us is what made the two years it took to write our book all worth it.  She begins: "I would like to tell you how much I appreciate your book - I bought it yesterday, read it all night, with a highlighter, crying...."

If you read all twenty stories, you'll come away with a pretty good idea of the toll "chemo brain" takes on cancer survivors and their families.  Michelle writes about trying to be loving and patient with her husband who went through chemo for Hodgkin's and is now chronically forgetful.  Susan M. tells us about her breast cancer diagnosis at age 38 and how she is still dealing with fog and depression.  Lois wonders if she has Alzheimer's.  Bruce Lantrywas treated for leukemia.  He has found ways to cope with his loss of mental focus.

Yet, these really are so much more than stories.  These are messages.  They are here, on this blog, from men and women of all ages and all cancer types.  They are here to confirm that each of us matters.
Also, make use of the SEARCH BOX at the top right of the page.  Put in keywords like lymphoma or breast cancer or memory ormultitasking or driving, or word retrieval, or exercise, and see what articles and resources come up.

And finally, to really learn about "chemo brain," to understand what causes it and what you can do about it,  get a copy of our book: "Your Brain After Chemo: A Practical Guide to Lifting the Fog and Getting Back Your Focus" by Dan Silverman, MD, PhD and Idelle Davidson.  See the reviews on Amazon.


  1. A great and complete medical resource site here. Thank you for putting this up and making things very available for those who need it.
  2. Thanks, Bobby! Please feel free to share the link to our blog with others.

    All the best.
  3. The mental anguish and suffering that results from chemotherapy is really the worst part of the entire treatment. Medical researchers should spend more time trying to address these side effects.
  4. Casey, the number of researchers taking treatment-related cognitive impairment seriously is growing, but bottom line, there is nothing concrete yet that fixes -- or even better -- prevents chemo brain.

    It may make you feel better to know that there's a group called, "The International Cognition and Cancer Task Force" that convenes periodically to review the latest science in the field. The ICCTF is made up of neuroscientists, neuropsychologists, and imaging and other experts from medical/research institutions all over the world.

    Next year, ICCTF will meet in Paris. Here's the link:
  5. Brain Cancer is considered a disability by the Social Security Administration.

    As a matter of fact the SSA has expedited all claims that have to do with brain cancer under it's compassionate allowances act.
  6. Hi, I see that your sign-in name is "Disability Help." I would like to learn more about what you do. Would you mind sending me your email address so that I can reach you? I'm at

    Thanks for posting.