Posts tagged ‘HealthDay’
The well-known drug tamoxifen might not always be the best choice for premenopausal women who have undergone treatment for breast cancer and face a heightened risk of recurrence. A new study suggests that the aromatase inhibitor exemestane, or Aromasin, works slightly better than tamoxifen in preventing cancer recurrence.
Five years of tamoxifen is considered the standard of care for pre-menopausal women with hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer; aromatase inhibitors are often used in post-menopausal women.
But in a new study in the New England Journal of Medicine, nearly 93 percent of women on the aromatase inhibitor exemestane remained free of breast cancer after five years. About 89 percent of women on tamoxifen remained free of breast cancer over the same amount of time. » Continue Reading
Regular exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle – especially for breast cancer survivors. Not only has research shown that exercise helps lower the risk of breast cancer, it also increases the survival chances for women diagnosed with the cancer.
Now a study in the International Journal of Cancer suggests that breast cancer survivors can get even greater reductions in breast cancer mortality by choosing a more robust exercise such as running, rather than walking.
Lead author Paul William of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, said his research shows that exceeding the current exercise recommendations is probably better than simply meeting them, and that running may be better than walking.
“If I were a breast cancer survivor, I would certainly consider running or some other vigorous exercise over walking, and I wouldn’t just be doing the minimum, with the consequences and potential benefit being so great,” said William in a press release.
To come to this conclusion, William and his team followed 986 breast cancer survivors from the National Runners’ and Walkers’ Health Study for nine years. Nearly 300 were considered runners; more than 700 were considered walkers. During the study period, 33 of the walkers and 13 of the runners died from breast cancer.
Preventive mammogram guidelines have long been a hot topic for debate.
Medical professionals and health care organizations are divided on how often a woman should be screened and at what age a woman should start preventive screening.
Health care organizations such as the American Cancer Society recommend annual mammograms for women beginning at age 40. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that women be screened every two years starting at age 50.
A new study, however, found that women who had mammograms every 12 to 18 months lowered the risk that cancer would spread to the lymph nodes.
“[The new study] adds more power behind the fact that we do need screening mammograms starting at age 40 and every year,” said Laura Kruper, M.D., director of the Rita Cooper Finkel and J. William Finkel Women’s Health Center at City of Hope, in an interview with HealthDay.
Many people have heard of the vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV), but they often don’t know how well it works to lower the risk of cervical cancer, a new study has found. In fact, few people actually talk to their doctors about the vaccine.
The study, which was funded by the American Cancer Society, was presented this month at the American Association for Cancer Research Conference on health disparities. It used 2012 and 2013 data from the National Cancer Institute survey on health trends.
The 1,400 people who participated were either in the age range for which the vaccine is recommended (9 to 27 years old) or had an immediate family member in that age bracket.
The researchers found that 70 percent of respondents were unsure how effective the vaccine was at preventing cervical cancer, with 78 percent of non-Hispanic blacks reporting uncertainty.
Only 25 percent of respondents said they had talked to their health-care providers about the HPV vaccine.
Science is paying off. Thanks to the significant progress in cancer research and scientific discoveries, more people are surviving cancer.
The third annual cancer progress report from the American Association for Cancer Research found that there have been more than 1 million fewer cancer deaths since 1990. Further, the number of cancer survivors in the U.S. continues to increase, with more than 13.7 million current survivors.
“The progress is astonishing,” said Cy Stein, M.D., Ph.D., Arthur & Rosalie Kaplan Chair in Medical Oncology at City of Hope in an interview with HealthDay. “Things have been getting better. That is the truth of this report.”
Part of the improvement can be traced to new drugs approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. These drugs, the result of decades of research, target specific defects in cancer. Known as targeted therapies, the medications are designed to attack genetic mutations in tumor cells and block their ability to grow.
“There are so many interventions now, because there are so many different forms of cancer,” said Stein in an interview with Time. “That’s why this is an exciting time to be a medical oncologist.”
However, even with the major developments and advancements, cancer still remains a worldwide problem.
Cavities – commonly regarded as a sign of poor oral health – might not be so bad after all, suggests a new study linking cavities to a decrease in the risk of some cancers. But don’t toss the toothbrush just yet.
An expert affiliated with City of Hope found the study to be extremely limited, so limited in fact that he doubts the findings.
“The authors and correlation do not prove cause and effect,” said Joel Epstein, D.M.D., M.S.D., a consultant with the Division of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery at City of Hope. “Also, even if caries [or cavities] are associated with reduced cancer risk –seems very unlikely – the dental damage, and infection risk of dental disease carries its own risk.”
The study, published in JAMA Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery and led by researchers at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, found that people with the most cavities in their teeth are significantly less likely to be diagnosed for some head and neck cancers, compared to those with the fewest cavities. » Continue Reading
Most women undergoing radiation for breast cancer lie on their backs during treatment, but a new study out of New York might flip that practice. It suggests that most women would have fewer side effects if they lie face down.
Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams, like X-rays, against cancer cells. Unfortunately, the beams can hit surrounding normal tissues in the heart and lungs. That causes side effects from coughing to chronic heart damage. So doctors and researchers are continually looking for ways to improve treatments.
That may be as simple as telling patients to flip over.