By Ritsuko Komaki, M.D.
As I sat in my sister's house in Nagoya, Japan, last Saturday, I was flooded with déjà vu.
There was enough hardship with the earthquake and tsunami, but fears about the nuclear power plant touched my early life -- Hiroshima, Nagasaki.
I'm a professor of radiation oncology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center because radiation has always been part of my story. I've used it to heal, but I've also experienced its destructive powers. And I prayed never to see its devastation again.
In fact, I never dreamed I would be sitting with family watching in horror the first explosion at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear complex in Okumamachi, northeastern Japan.
On Thursday, March 10, I'd left Houston for Tokyo, where I was to give a talk to radiation oncologists, surgeons and neurosurgeons about a specific kind of radiation for early lung cancer. But ten minutes outside Narita Airport, we were informed that there had been an earthquake, and the airport was closed.
Read the full story here.
Radiation Has Always Been Part of My Story
By Ritsuko Komaki, M.D.
Connect on social media
- Participating in a clinical trial for CLL treatment: What it's really like
- My metastatic breast cancer recurrence: "You first" and other lessons
- Love, interrupted: How mantle cell lymphoma affected a 30-year reunion
- 3 nutrition tips for cancer caregivers
- Oncology nurse: How my family's cancer journey changed me
- Lung cancer survivor reflects on "a whole new life"
- CLL patient experiences "life the way it's supposed to be"
- After AML, survivor continues to be a channel of blessings
- Ovarian cancer survivor offers hope for new patients
- A year of progress for our Moon Shots Program
- Cancer Prevention (122)
- Cancer Research (142)
- Education (71)
- Patient Care (313)
- Global Navigation
- About Us
- How You Can Help
- Children's Art Project
- Contact Us
- Patient and Cancer Information
- Cancer Information
- Patient Information
- Care Centers & Clinics
- Children’s Cancer Hospital
- Services & Amenities
- Clinical Trials
- News and Publications
- Education and Research
- Departments, Programs & Labs
- Research at MD Anderson
- Education & Training
- Resources for Professionals
- For Employees
- Employee Resources
- Doing Business
- Vendors & Suppliers
- Partners & Affiliates
- State of Texas
- State of Texas Home Page
- Statewide Search (TRAIL)
- State Comptroller - Where the Money Goes
- Texas Homeland Security
- The University of Texas System
- Institution Resume
- Legal and Policy
- Legal Statements & Site Policies
- Stay Connected
- Emergency Alerts
- Emergency Alert Information