October 31, 2012 |
Low levels of vitamin D in the blood double the risk of developing bladder cancer, Spanish researchers reported Wednesday. The low levels increase the risk of the most aggressive form of the disease almost six-fold, the researchers reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Spain has about 11,000 new cases of bladder cancer per year, one of the highest rates in the world. The United States has about 73,500 new cases per year, with nearly 15,000 deaths. It is primarily a disease of the elderly, with nine out of 10 victims over the age of 55. Low levels of vitamin D have previously been linked to increased risk of breast and colon cancer, but no one has studied the potential association with bladder cancer, according to Dr. Nuria Malats, a geneticist at the Spanish National Cancer Research Center.
October 23, 2012
Robotic surgery was initially developed to target prostate cancer - and today four in five prostectomies are performed by this revolutionary system, according to the National Cancer Institute. Although robotics - the pioneering da Vinci Surgical System in particular - is today employed to treat a wide range of cancers, it remains an especially effective way to deal with the specific challenges of prostate cancer. Robotic surgery has also been shown to minimize recovery time, pain and side effects.
September 17, 2012 |
Cancer has become the leading cause of death among U.S. Latinos, nosing past heart disease in 2009, researchers at the American Cancer Society reported Monday. For most demographic groups - and for the country as a whole - heart disease is the top killer, claiming a total of 599,413 American lives in 2009, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That same year, the most recent year for which statistics are available, 567,628 Americans died of cancer. Among Latinos that year, the rankings were reversed: 29,935 died of cancer and 29,611 of heart disease, according to a study in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.
September 13, 2012 |
Cancer is running out of places to hide. A new blood test can ferret out a single cancer cell tucked away among a billion healthy cells. Radiologists are using crystal-clear 3-D mammograms to find suspicious spots and lumps that they never could have seen with an old X-ray machine. And CT scans can detect the earliest signs of lung cancer before a patient even has a chance to feel out of breath. Today's doctors have the tools and technology to catch all sorts of tumors that would have gone unnoticed in years past.
July 24, 2012 |
Pancreatic cancer, the most aggressive type of cancer, has claimed the life of astronaut Sally Ride, the first American woman in space. Ride died Monday at age of 61 after a 17-month-long battle against the disease. Pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related deaths for people in the United States. It has the lowest survival rate of any type of cancer - according to the American Cancer Society, the one-year survival rate is 20% for all stages of pancreatic cancer combined.
July 18, 2012 |
Most patients diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer will live just as long if they simply watch their cancers rather than have them surgically removed, according to the results of a landmark clinical trial that could upend the medical approach to a disease that affects 1 in 6 men. The study, which focused on cancers still confined to the prostate, should reassure patients who want to avoid distressing side effects of surgery - such as urinary incontinence...
June 1, 2012 |
Taking the diabetes drug pioglitazone, better known by the brand name Actos, doubles the risk of developing bladder cancer, Canadian researchers have found. In absolute terms, however, the risk remains low, the researchers found -- an extra 137 cases per 100,000 person-years. According to the National Cancer Institute, there are an estimated 70,530 cases of bladder cancer in the U.S. each year and 14,680 deaths. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned in June 2011 that taking Actos for at least a year increased the risk of bladder cancer by at least 40%, and ordered the drug's manufacturer, Takeda Pharmaceutical North America, to note the risk on the drug's label.
May 30, 2012 |
Noting that “children are not just small adults,” researchers at the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and the Washington University have released the complete genomes of 260 St. Jude pediatric cancer patients - as well as the genomes of their tumors - for scientific study. In a statement released Tuesday, the researchers said that the data “more than doubles the volume of … whole genome data from all human genome sources combined.” The hope for this and other cancer genomics projects like the National Cancer Institute's Cancer Genome Atlas is to identify the mutations in genes that cause cancer - and, if possible, figure out how to find exactly the right intervention for a patient's specific tumor.
April 10, 2012 |
Screening longtime tobacco users for lung cancer would be less costly than the widely accepted practice of screening for breast, cervical and colorectal cancers and would reduce the death toll of lung cancer by an estimated 15,000 lives a year, according to a study released Monday that is likely to ignite debate on expanding healthcare coverage for smokers. Using the financial standards generally employed by health insurance companies, a group of actuarial economists calculated that annual low-dose CT scans of middle-aged Americans who have smoked the equivalent of a pack of cigarettes every day for 30 years would cost each insured American an extra 76 cents a month.
February 8, 2012
A panel of cancer experts voted against a new use for Amgen Inc.'s Xgeva in prostate cancer on Wednesday, saying the drug's ability to slow the spread of the disease did not translate into meaningful benefits for patients. The Food and Drug Administration's cancer drug panel voted 12 to 1 that the benefits of the drug did not outweigh its risks, which included bone disease in about 6% of patients. The FDA is not required to follow the group's advice, although it often does. Xgeva is already approved to prevent fractures in cancerous bones, and for osteoporosis, in a different formulation called Prolia.