January 7, 2013 |
This year's Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, released online Monday, brought Americans good news and bad. Extending a trend since the early 1990s, authors reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute that cancer deaths have continued to fall in the United States, with rates declining 1.5% per year for all cancers, in both sexes combined, from 2000 to 2009. Deaths from the most common cancers - including lung,...
January 4, 2013 |
Deep in the fine print of a $633-billion defense bill signed by President Obama on Wednesday, a provision aimed at the National Cancer Institute may hasten the development of earlier detection and treatment methods for deadly malignancies such as pancreatic cancer. The Defense Authorization Act signed into law Jan. 2 carried along the Recalcitrant Cancer Research Act, a measure pressed by the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and the Lung Cancer Alliance to shift the focus of the federal government's cancer research toward malignancies with poor early-detection and low survival rates.
November 28, 2012 |
A new genetic test may help determine whether a small tumor in the breast is likely to turn in to full-blown breast cancer, according to a study published Wednesday in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The small tumor, called a ductal carcinoma in-situ, or DCIS, resides in the milk ducts and is generally considered pre-cancerous. But according to the study, DCIS lesions left untreated will eventually progress to breast cancer in about 50% of patients. The lesions, which tend to be small and only detectable via mammogram, have become increasingly common as mammography has become more widespread.
November 22, 2012 |
About a third of all tumors discovered in routine mammography screenings are unlikely to result in illness, according to a new study that says 30 years of the breast cancer exams have resulted in the overdiagnosis of 1.3 million American women. The report, published Thursday in the New England Journal of Medicine, argues that the increase in breast cancer survival rates over the last few decades is due mostly to improved therapies and not screenings, which are intended to flag tumors when they are small and most susceptible to treatment.
November 21, 2012 |
A controversial study published in the New England Journal of Medicine that raises questions about the value of routine mammogram screenings is just the latest in a series of papers raising alarms over some forms of cancer treatment. Earlier this year, another study concluded that 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. At the root of both studies is a newly developing view of early cancer diagnosis, particularly for prostate and breast cancer.
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.