Fertility is rarely discussed with young cancer patients | Concentrated radiation may make therapy more available | Researchers use PET/CT to find evidence of "chemo brain"
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November 29, 2012
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Cancer news and resources for health care professionals

Patient-Centered Cancer Care
Fertility is rarely discussed with young cancer patients
More and more evidence suggests that not enough young cancer patients are told about the potential impact that therapy could have on their fertility, and fewer still receive fertility counseling or undergo fertility preservation. The American Society of Clinical Oncology plans to release updated guidelines in the next year that more forcefully urge oncologists to discuss fertility issues with patients before treatment begins. The Huffington Post (11/29)
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Concentrated radiation may make therapy more available
An experimental treatment for early-stage breast cancer could reduce health care costs and improve access to care for women facing obstacles such as distance, transportation and time constraints, says Dr. Anthony Dragun, a radiation oncologist. The once-a-week therapy appears to carry side effects similar to daily therapy, research indicates. The Courier-Journal (Louisville, Ky.) (tiered subscription model) (11/18)
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Other News
Emerging Trends, Products & Technologies
Smartphone diagnostic for diabetes, cancer patients is in the works
QUICK is working on a smartphone-based diagnostic platform that uses saliva or urine to aid in disease monitoring. The mobile health startup intends to initially use the device for monitoring ketone levels in diabetes patients, with plans to develop the system for measuring chemotherapy levels in cancer patients, among other applications. MedCityNews.com (11/16)
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Institute allots $12 million for patient outcomes studies
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute has announced $12 million in funding to as many as 14 projects aimed at bridging the gaps in clinical outcomes research. "Our goal is to improve this field of research by building data infrastructure, improving analytic methods and training researchers, patients and other stakeholders to participate in the conduct of research," PCORI Executive Director Dr. Joe Selby said. Healthcare IT News (11/19)
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Cancer Research & Health Policy
Regular checkups don't reduce deaths due to cancer, heart disease
Danish researchers reviewed 14 studies involving almost 183,000 people and found no significant evidence that routine screening can help lower risk of dying from cancer or heart disease. Such checkups may encourage the use of invasive tests that can potentially harm healthy people, resulting to overdiagnosis and unnecessary treatment, the study in the journal BMJ found. However, the lack of benefit could be because high-risk patients' needs were addressed outside the context of routine checkups, a researcher said. HealthDay News (11/21)
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Mammograms don't reduce late-stage breast cancer cases
An analysis of U.S. data on breast cancer incidence and survival rates from 1976 to 2008 and survey data estimating how many women get mammograms indicated that mammography has been effective in detecting early-stage breast cancer but has not led to fewer cases of more serious, advanced cancer. Researchers estimated that 1.3 million women who received mammograms during the period were overdiagnosed. The study appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine. HealthDay News (11/21)
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Other News
Foundation News
Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Education Class
Historically, young adult cancer survivors have not been seen as a separate population with a unique set of physical, emotional and practical needs. This group falls between pediatric and adult oncology, which often means young adult patients do not receive adequate resources and support services. The objectives of the class are to bring light to this underrepresented population, address the distinctive characteristics of this age group and highlight several resources already in place to serve the needs of young adult cancer survivors and their health care professionals. Learn more about the AYA Cancer Education Class on the LIVESTRONG blog.
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Cancer Survivors and Clinical Trials
I had no idea what melanoma was. I found out the cancer had spread to my lungs, chest and back. The oncologist said it was a “very mean melanoma.” I didn’t have health insurance, and I didn’t know anything about clinical trials. What I’ve learned is that it’s absolutely crucial to have access to information. Now I know that all the drugs and medicines we take every day were subject to clinical trials and developmental studies.
Learn more about Brian’s story at LIVESTRONG.org/Brian.
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You need to stay on top of health insurance ... make sure that when the bills come in from the hospital that you are not double paying because they send bills very quickly."
-- Cindy C., cancer survivor
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The LIVESTRONG Foundation does not necessarily endorse the opinions that may be mentioned on this site, the articles are published for informational purposes and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this site.
About the LIVESTRONG Foundation
The LIVESTRONG Foundation provides free cancer support services to help people cope with the financial, emotional and practical challenges that accompany the disease. Created in 1997 by cancer survivor and philanthropist Lance Armstrong, the Foundation is known for its powerful brand – LIVESTRONG–and for its advocacy on behalf of survivors and their families. With its iconic yellow LIVESTRONG wristband, the Foundation has become a symbol of hope and inspiration around the world. Since its inception, the Foundation has raised nearly $500 million to support cancer survivors and served 2.5 million people affected by the disease. For more information, visit LIVESTRONG.org.
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