Cancer Survivorship
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For Many Cancer Sufferers a Second Cancer is the Price of Survival

For Many Cancer Sufferers a Second Cancer is the Price of Survival | Cancer Survivorship | Scoop.it

Via Graham Player Ph.D.
Tambre Leighn's insight:

Yet another reason why coaching for cancer survivors is SO imperative. To face cancer twice without the tools of how to be empowered, a strong self-advocate, how to reduce stress created by the impact of cancer and improve quality of life is unfathomable. 

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Graham Player Ph.D.'s curator insight, September 19, 2014 2:21 AM

Often the price of cancer survival comes with an increased risk for a second cancer. Oncologists and primary care doctors are seeing a significant upsurge in patients with second cancers as survivors age. For some patients, their increased risk appears to be driven by genetic susceptibility; for others, the risks are strongly related to the treatment they underwent for their primary cancer.

Several decades ago, individuals with a second cancer accounted for less than one in 10 cancer diagnoses. Figures presented at ASCO indicate that today these second cancers occur much more frequently, representing 19% of all new cancer diagnoses, nearly one in five, said Lindsay Morton, PhD, a cancer epidemiologist with the NCI.

Investigators do not understand precisely why this happens, but they have identified several risk factors. There are the obvious factors, notably primary cancer treatments, including radiotherapy and, to a lesser extent, chemotherapy. Women appear to be at higher risk for developing second cancers, particularly breast cancer. And patients who were younger at the time of their first diagnosis or who received radiotherapy at a young age also were at higher risk.

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Depression and Cancer: 10 Things You Should Know

Depression and Cancer: 10 Things You Should Know | Cancer Survivorship | Scoop.it

"At first glance, the connection between a cancer diagnosis and depression might seem to be an obvious one. However, in patients battling this life-threatening disease, depression can have a serious impact, and even worsen the odds of survival. While the best approach to interrupting this vicious cycle is not fully understood, clinicians can help patients improve their odds by availing them of therapeutic resources and open communication."


Via Cancer Commons
Tambre Leighn's insight:

So few survivors are being screened for anxiety and depression - which impact quality of life.  It's important for survivors and caregivers to be aware of these ten things and communicate with healthcare providers when necessary.

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Cancer Commons's curator insight, May 13, 2014 3:10 PM

Healio  |  May 13, 2014

Cancer Commons's curator insight, May 13, 2014 3:10 PM

Healio  |  May 13, 2014

Cancer Commons's curator insight, May 13, 2014 3:10 PM

Healio  |  May 13, 2014

Rescooped by Tambre Leighn from Lung Cancer Dispatch
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Married Cancer Patients More Likely to Survive

Married Cancer Patients More Likely to Survive | Cancer Survivorship | Scoop.it

Married people are 20% less likely to die from cancer, a recent study found. Married patients were less likely to be diagnosed with an advanced stage of the disease and more likely to undergo the best treatment plan for their disease state. Moreover, even at the same cancer stage and undergoing the same treatment, married patients were significantly less likely to die. For several cancers, including prostate and colorectal cancer, the effect of marriage on survival was greater than that of chemotherapy. Several factors may explain these findings. Spouses may remind each other to get regular medical check-ups and encourage each other to stick to their cancer treatments. Social support may also alleviate depression, lower stress, and strengthen the immune system.


Via Cancer Commons
Tambre Leighn's insight:

Great news...but what about those who are not married?  How can we turn these findings into tools to increase survival for more people, even if they are single? 

 

Looks like a lot of opportunity for technology based apps that support accountabilty for regular checkups (Keep a Breast Foundation (http://www.keep-a-breast.org/) has a great, free app that is a self-check reminder) and social media like Facebook and peer to peer organizations such as stupidcancer.com for Young Adults, Imerman Angels for survivors and caregivers to help overcome isolation.

 

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Cancer Commons's curator insight, September 26, 2013 5:45 AM

Los Angeles Times | Sep 24, 2013

Cancer Commons's curator insight, September 26, 2013 12:13 PM

Los Angeles Times | Sep 24, 2013

Cancer Commons's curator insight, September 26, 2013 12:14 PM

Los Angeles Times | Sep 24, 2013

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Living With Cancer: Chronic, Not Cured

Living With Cancer: Chronic, Not Cured | Cancer Survivorship | Scoop.it

"At the end of yoga sessions for cancer patients, we are told to say to ourselves, 'I am whole, healed and healthy in this and every moment.' Perversely, since in yoga we express aspirations as if they were already so, the sentence reminds me of people who congratulate me on being 'cancer free.' Stable disease often goes unrecognized.

 

"Perhaps the concept of chronic cancer has been hard to comprehend because public discussion tends to focus on the initial diagnosis of breast cancer. Early detection of breast cancer yields good survival rates and many patients can consider themselves cured. Often we assume a clear-cut partition between survivors and the terminally ill."

 

Editor's note: This article addresses the under-recognition of chronic cancer that is neither cured nor quickly progressing, and how patients cope with finding themselves in this "gray area."


Via Cancer Commons
Tambre Leighn's insight:

Finally!  Credit to the advocates for finally creating recognition for a segment of the cancer survivor population that has long been kept out of conversations - and, yes, even some support groups.  Education is the first step.  Chronic and metastatic disease can be a confronting conversation but to ignore the unique challenges, concerns and needs of any part of the population dealing with the impact of cancer is not acceptable.  Wonderful to see a mainstream media source bringing this issue to the forefront.  Education leads to less fear, less judgment, less ignorance and greater compassion, connection and support.

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Cancer Commons's curator insight, June 5, 2014 4:30 PM

The New York Times  |  Jun 5, 2014

Beth A. Williams's curator insight, June 7, 2014 12:41 PM

This article raises an important facet of some cancers -- that of a chronic condition rather than either a "cure" or an actively progressing disease. How others view this "gray area" vs. how cancer patients view it can make a difference in how supported the individual feels. Nonetheless, my view is that the cancer patient's perspective, attitudes and beliefs trump what goes on externally, and that we can choose happiness regardless of what is going on around us.

Teresa Levitch's curator insight, July 4, 2014 9:00 AM

Given the long term effects of cancer treatment, such as Radiation Fibrosis, Chemo Brain, and Secondary Cancers ,after we are declared in remission we live in a gray area..

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"Quality of Life" Care Extends Life for People with Cancer

"Quality of Life" Care Extends Life for People with Cancer | Cancer Survivorship | Scoop.it

Improving the quality of life — palliative care — for people with cancer can also increase survival, according a new pilot study. These findings will be presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology's 2013 Quality Care Symposium. Palliative care addresses uncontrolled symptoms, helps guide decision making, and coordinates treatment. This service is underused, and the researchers found that routinely offering it to people makes them twice as likely to take advantage of it (82% vs. 41%). With palliative care, hospital readmissions dropped from 36% to 17%, and hospice use rose from 14% to 25%. Best of all, people who got palliative care lived longer, with the ratio of expected to actual deaths dropping from 1.35 to 0.59.


Via Cancer Commons, Tambre Leighn
Tambre Leighn's insight:

Just as the definition of palliative care has, until recently, had a limited viewpoint of being somehow related to only hospice, tying "quality of life" to palliative care can lead to similar limitations. 

 

Quality of life must include ALL areas of life, not just medical symptoms or health challenges.  Often stress, anxiety and worries come from the impact cancer has on other areas such as finances, relationships, career and more.

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Cancer Commons's curator insight, November 1, 2013 3:05 PM

Mount Sinai Medical Center│Oct 29, 2013

Cancer Commons's curator insight, November 1, 2013 3:05 PM

Mount Sinai Medical Center│Oct 29, 2013

Tambre Leighn's curator insight, November 2, 2013 2:13 AM

Just as the definition of palliative care has, until recently, had a limited viewpoint of being somehow related to only hospice, tying "quality of life" to palliative care can lead to similar limitations. 

 

Quality of life must include ALL areas of life, not just medical symptoms or health challenges.  Often stress, anxiety and worries come from the impact cancer has on other areas such as finances, relationships, career and more. 

Rescooped by Tambre Leighn from Lung Cancer Dispatch
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High Body Weight Is Protective Early On in Lung Cancer, But Not Later

High Body Weight Is Protective Early On in Lung Cancer, But Not Later | Cancer Survivorship | Scoop.it

People with a higher Body Mass Index (BMI) – i.e., those who are heavy for their height – are at lower risk of lung cancer. However, the effect of BMI on those who do develop lung cancer is less understood. A recent study found that among patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), those who were obese had higher survival rates early in the study than normal-weight or merely overweight patients. However, after 16 months on the study, the survival rates of obese patients dropped below those of other patients. Over time, the risk of death from other causes that obesity poses appears to outweigh the protective effect of high body weight against death from lung cancer.


Via Cancer Commons
Tambre Leighn's insight:

Headlines like this drive me crazy!  Read the fine print and the article says that other health risks created by obesity outweigh any potential obesity may have to "protect" against lung cancer...and if you are diagnosed with it, then it also works against you.  With obesity at an all time high, putting out misleading headlines that purport any benefit to being obese is irresponsible.  This headline would better serve us if were "High Body Weight Increases Risk of Death From Causes Other Than Lung Cancer and Potentially Impacts Survival Rates if Diagnosed with Lung Cancer."

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Cancer Commons's curator insight, September 5, 2013 4:20 AM

Healio | Aug 29, 2013