BOSTON—The national discourse on cancer screening has come a long way since 1988, when Ronald Reagan became the first president to say “breast cancer” in public, noted Alec Stone, MA, MPA, Health Policy Director, Oncology Nursing Society (ONS). After the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommended mammography screening every 2 years instead of annually, beginning at 50 years of age instead of 40, the public outcry was widespread and loud. Controversy has also been swirling about prostate cancer screening recommendations.
Functional, psychological, and emotional well-being is of utmost importance to cancer patients. Macmillan Cancer Support has published Move More, a report highlighting the benefits of exercise for enhancing quality of life (QOL) in cancer survivors. How exercise affects functional capacity, muscular strength, body composition, nausea, fatigue, personality functioning, mood states, self-esteem, and QOL are summarized in the report.
Individualized computer-delivered treatment (CDT) for the maintenance of smoking cessation after a quit attempt did not increase short- or long-term abstinence rates compared with standard treatment (ST) in a group of 303 daily smokers who received either CDT or ST in combination with pharmacotherapy. At 1 week, 1 month, 6 months, and 12 months, no significant differences were found between the groups.
After a diagnosis of cancer, patients often initiate or increase their use of vitamins and dietary supplements, and their use is prevalent among the 11.7 million adults in the United States living with cancer. Whereas 50% of healthy adults take 1 or more dietary supplements, between 64% and 81% of cancer survivors report that they use vitamin or dietary supplements.1 Reasons offered for using these alternative therapies include strengthening the immune system, increasing the chance to be cured, and gaining a sense of control over their disease.
The evidence backing the use of myeloid growth factors in patients at high risk for febrile neutropenia is solid, according to Jeffrey Crawford, MD, of Duke Cancer Institute, Durham, North Carolina.
Myeloid growth factors are the primary means of preventing chemotherapy-induced neutropenia. This often leads to febrile neutropenia, which can be fatal in 10% of patients, according to a database of more than 40,000 individuals. Concerns recently have been raised, however, that their use is associated with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
Researchers from the National Cancer Institute report that radiation therapy for a first cancer is unlikely to lead to a second cancer diagnosis later in life. Berrington de Gonzalez and associates conducted a retrospective review of data from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results cancer registry for nearly 650,000 adults who received a cancer diagnosis between 1973 and 2002 and survived at least 5 years.
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