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Study: Cancer Center Ads Long on Emotions, Short on Facts

Study: Cancer Center Ads Long on Emotions, Short on Facts | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Advertisements for cancer centers often appeal to consumers’ emotions but rarely provide useful information about the benefits, risks, or costs of treatment, a recent analysis concluded.


“ 'We found that cancer therapies were promoted more commonly than supportive or screening services and were often described in vague or general terms,' the authors wrote in the May 27 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine. 'Advertisements commonly evoked hope for survival, promoted innovative treatment advances, and used language about fighting cancer while providing relatively limited information about benefits, risks, costs, or insurance coverage of advertised therapies.' "

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Cancer Network  |  May 30, 2014

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Poor Quality of Life Does Not Predict Low Survival Rates in High-Risk Lung Cancer Patients Undergoing Surgery

Poor Quality of Life Does Not Predict Low Survival Rates in High-Risk Lung Cancer Patients Undergoing Surgery | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

"Quality of life is rarely reported in surgical publications, yet it can be an important metric that can be of use to physicians and patients when making treatment decisions. Prior studies of average-risk patients undergoing lobectomy suggested that low baseline quality-of-life scores predict worse survival in patients undergoing non–small cell lung cancer surgery.


"However, the results of a multicenter, longitudinal study of high-risk lung cancer patients who underwent sublobar resection counters this idea, finding that poor baseline global quality-of-life scores did not predict for worse overall survival or recurrence-free survival or greater risk of adverse events. Bryan F. Meyers, MD, presented the results of this research today on behalf of the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology at the 94th American Association for Thoracic Surgery Annual Meeting in Toronto, Ontario."

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The ASCO Post  |  Apr 29, 2014

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Eating Organic Food Doesn't Lower Your Overall Risk of Cancer, Study Says

Eating Organic Food Doesn't Lower Your Overall Risk of Cancer, Study Says | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

"Women who always or mostly eat organic foods have the same likelihood of developing cancer as women who eat conventionally produced foods, according to an Oxford University study.


"Kathryn Bradbury and colleagues in Oxford's Cancer Epidemiology Unit found no evidence that regularly eating a diet that was grown free from pesticides reduced a woman's overall risk of cancer."

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Medical Xpress  |  Mar 28, 2014

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National Poll Shows Public Divided on Genetic Testing to Predict Cancer Risk

National Poll Shows Public Divided on Genetic Testing to Predict Cancer Risk | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

"A national poll from the University of Utah's Huntsman Cancer Institute shows 34% of respondents would not seek genetic testing to predict their likelihood of developing a hereditary cancer—even if the cost of the testing was not an issue.


"Concerns about employment and insurability were cited as the primary reason, even though current laws prohibit such discrimination.

The poll also shows only 35% percent of respondents would be extremely or very likely to seek aggressive prophylactic or preventive treatment, such as a mastectomy, if they had a family history of cancer and genetic testing indicated a genetic predisposition to cancer."

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Medical Xpress  |  Feb 5, 2014

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E-Cigarette Vapor Promotes Cancer-Like Transformations of Airway Cells with Predisposing Mutations

E-Cigarette Vapor Promotes Cancer-Like Transformations of Airway Cells with Predisposing Mutations | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

E-cigarettes (electronic cigarettes that use a battery-powered system to deliver nicotine without producing smoke) are advertised as a safer alternative to tobacco cigarettes. However, very few studies have investigated how e-cigarettes affect lung function and lung cancer risk. Researchers examined human airway cells with mutations in the TP53 and KRAS genes, which are often mutated in the airways of current or former smokers at high risk of lung cancer. When the cells were exposed to e-cigarette vapor, they developed cancer-cell-like behaviors and gene expression changes very similar to what was seen when these cells were exposed to tobacco smoke. E-cigarettes may increase the risk of developing lung cancer in high-risk people, including current and former tobacco smokers.

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ASCO Post  |  Jan 8, 2014

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Taking Steps to Reduce Rates of Silica-Related Lung Cancer

Taking Steps to Reduce Rates of Silica-Related Lung Cancer | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Silica is a chemical found in sand and quartz and used in a multitude of industrial applications. Inhalation of silica dust can occur in a number of occupations and increases the risk of lung cancer. A recent review highlights new developments in understanding the health effects of silica exposure and recommends steps to reduce silica-related illness and death. Studies documenting the health risks associated with different levels of silica exposure have enabled evidence-driven regulations. Federal regulators are considering lowering the permissible occupational exposure to silica for workers, a measure that could cut the number of silica-related deaths in half. The review authors also recommend that workers exposed to silica who also smoke undergo computed tomography (CT) scans to screen for lung cancer starting at age 50 years.

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Medical News Today  |  Dec 12, 2013

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Gene Expression Pattern Predicts Risk in Early Lung Cancer

Gene Expression Pattern Predicts Risk in Early Lung Cancer | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

In a past clinical trial, researchers identified a collection of 15 genes whose expression pattern predicted the relative risk of death in people with early-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Now, a new study has confirmed these findings in a larger, independent group of patients. Early-stage NSCLC patients who were classified into high- or low-risk groups based on testing the expression of the 15 genes differed significantly in their overall 5-year survival. These gene expression patterns may therefore help distinguish patients at higher risk who would benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy (chemotherapy given after tumor removal surgery), from lower-risk patients who could avoid the side effects of chemotherapy. Indeed, the Pervenio test, which looks at the expression of 14 genes, is already used to identify the patient who may benefit from aduvant chemotherapy.

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Medical News Today  |  Dec 9, 2013

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Advances in Screening and Surgery Improve Lung Cancer Survival

Advances in Screening and Surgery Improve Lung Cancer Survival | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

New U.S. guidelines recommending low-dose computed tomography (CT) scans to screen for lung cancer in high-risk individuals are leading to earlier detection and better survival for lung cancer patients. Screening is available without a prescription for people who have smoked the equivalent of at least a pack of cigarettes per day for 30 years. The scans can uncover lung cancer in early stages, when the chances for successful treatment are the highest. Recent medical advances have also made lung cancer surgery less invasive. Robotic surgeries can often be performed through small incisions in the chest, without the need to crack open ribs. These developments mean more lung cancer patients can undergo surgery and those who do have an easier recovery.

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Tampa Bay Times  |  Nov 29, 2013

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No Convincing Evidence That Supplements Help Prevent Cancer

No Convincing Evidence That Supplements Help Prevent Cancer | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

A review by a panel of independent U.S. experts concludes that there is not enough evidence to recommend either for or against the use of most vitamin or mineral supplements to reduce the risk of cancer. However, the panel’s guidelines advise against the use of beta-carotene (a precursor of vitamin A) and vitamin E for cancer prevention, because there is relatively clear evidence that neither is effective. Indeed, beta-carotene supplements appear to increase lung cancer risk in people already at high risk of the disease. Instead, the panel recommends that healthy adults without nutritional deficiencies get their nutrients by eating a varied diet to minimize the risk of chronic disease, including cancer.

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MedPage Today | Nov 11, 2013

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Genetic Test Can Predict Risk of Death in Lung Cancer

Genetic Test Can Predict Risk of Death in Lung Cancer | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

A new test for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients may help guide treatment decisions. The myPlan Lung Cancer test analyzes gene expression in patients with early-stage lung adenocarcinoma, a type of NSCLC, to predict their chances of dying within the next 5 years. A study showed that patients with a high-risk myPlan Lung Cancer score had nearly double the risk of death (35%) than patients with a low-risk score (18%). myPlan Lung Cancer results were better predictors of survival than cancer stage; tumor size; or the patient's age, sex, or smoking status. More accurate risk predictions could help identify early-stage NSCLC patients for whom aggressive treatment after surgery would be advisable despite the possibility of side effects.

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MarketWatch | Oct 29, 2013

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New Tool Helps to Tell Cancerous Lung Spots from Benign Ones

New Tool Helps to Tell Cancerous Lung Spots from Benign Ones | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Researchers have developed a 'risk calculator' that can identify with 90% accuracy whether spots or bumps (so-called 'nodules') detected by a CT (computed tomography) scan in high-risk individuals are indeed lung cancer or not. Prevention experts recommend annual low-dose lung CT scans for heavy smokers. However, these scans also detect many nodules that are not cancer and follow-up interventions can be costly and dangerous. The new risk calculation software uses several different factors, including the size of the nodule and its location in the lung; the patient’s age, sex, and family history; and more, to predict whether a given nodule is cancerous. Experts hope that this tool will reduce unnecessary follow-up procedures, while increasing early detection of lung cancer.

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Tissue Analysis May Help Predict Risk of Early-Stage Lung Cancer Returning

Tissue Analysis May Help Predict Risk of Early-Stage Lung Cancer Returning | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

The tissue types present in early-stage lung adenocarcinomas, a type of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), may help predict the chances of the cancer returning after surgery. A retrospective study examined outcomes among adenocarcinoma patients whose tumors were 2 cm in diameter or smaller. Patients whose tumors contained 5% or more of a so-called 'micropapillary' tissue structure had a higher risk of the cancer returning if they had just the tumor removed. This difference was not found in patients who underwent lobectomy (removal of an entire subsection of lung). The higher risk of recurrence in patients with 5%-plus micropapillary tissue in their tumor may make them better candidates for the more invasive lobectomy procedure.

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MedPage Today | Aug 7, 2013

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Particulate Matter Air Pollution Contributes to Increased Risk of Lung Cancer in Europe

Ambient air pollution has been associated with lung cancer risk. In a study reported in Lancet Oncology by Ole Raaschou-Nielsen, PhD, of the Danish Cancer Society Research Center, and colleagues, lung cancer incidence in European countries was prospectively assessed according to several measures of air pollution exposure. The study showed that particulate matter air pollution contributes to risk of lung cancer, particularly adenocarcinoma.

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The ASCO Post. Jul 29, 2013.

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Noncalcified Nodules Predicted Long-Term Lung Cancer Risk

Noncalcified Nodules Predicted Long-Term Lung Cancer Risk | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

"Noncalcified nodules conveyed long-term lung cancer risk and acted as cancer precursors, according to study results.


"The findings 'offer support to the idea of utilizing noncalcified nodules as substitute outcomes for chemoprevention,' the researchers concluded."

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Healio  |  May 16, 2014

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ELCC 2014 News: Clinical Utility of miRNA Signature in Plasma of Smokers Included in LD-CT Lung Cancer Screening

"Recent results indicate that low-dose computed tomography (LD-CT) screening reduces lung cancer mortality in high risk subjects. However, high false positive rates, costs and potential harm highlight the need for complementary biomarkers. Led by Dr Ugo Pastorino, a group of researchers from Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan, Italy, retrospectively evaluated a non-invasive plasma miRNA signature classifier in prospectively collected samples from smokers within the randomised Multicentre Italian Lung Detection (MILD) trial. Their findings indicate that microRNA signature classifier has predictive, diagnostic and prognostic value and its combined use with LD-CT may improve screening performance. The results were presented in a proffered papers session at the 4th European Lung Cancer Conference (26-29 March 2014, Geneva, Switzerland)."


Editor's note: LD-CT is a lung cancer detection method that has been shown to reduce risk of death from lung cancer for high-risk patients. However, it sometimes leads to "false-positives," in which suspected cancer later turns out not to be cancer. A new, non-invasive blood test to look for specific kinds of miRNA molecules was shown to be promising as a potential companion test to complement LD-CT screening.

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ESMO  |  Mar 28, 2014

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Inherited Mutated Gene Raises Lung Cancer Risk for Women, Those Who Never Smoked

Inherited Mutated Gene Raises Lung Cancer Risk for Women, Those Who Never Smoked | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

"People who have an inherited mutation of a certain gene have a high chance of getting lung cancer—higher, even, than heavy smokers with or without the inherited mutation, according to new findings by cancer researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center. Although both genders have an equal risk of inheriting the mutation, those who develop lung cancer are mostly women and have never smoked, the researchers found.


"People with the rare inherited T790M mutation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene who have never smoked have a one-in-three chance of developing lung cancer, researchers found. This risk is considerably greater than that of the average heavy smoker, who has about a one-in-eight chance of developing lung cancer – about 40- fold greater than people who have never smoked and do not have the mutation."

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Medical Xpress  |  Mar 24, 2014

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Radiation from Medical Imaging May Increase Cancer Rates

Radiation from Medical Imaging May Increase Cancer Rates | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Medical imaging techniques that use high doses of radiation, including computed tomography (CT) scans, play an important role in modern medicine, including cancer screening. However, these procedures may themselves increase the incidence of cancer. Radiation exposure from medical imaging in the U.S. has increased more than sixfold between the 1980s and 2006. Several studies have linked multiple CT scans to increased cancer risk. Moreover, there are no official guidelines on the correct radiation doses for different medical imaging techniques, meaning that doses at one hospital may be up to 50 times higher than at another. Clear standards are needed to ensure that high-radiation imaging techniques are only used when clearly medically necessary and that the lowest feasible radiation doses are employed.

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New York Times  |  Jan 30, 2014

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New York Times  |  Jan 30, 2014

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Annual Lung Cancer Screening Recommended for High-Risk Individuals

Annual Lung Cancer Screening Recommended for High-Risk Individuals | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has published its final recommendations on lung cancer screening. The panel advises annual computed tomography (CT) scans for high-risk individuals (heavy smokers or former heavy smokers who have quit within the past 15 years) between 55 and 80 years of age. The recommendation is based on the results of a comprehensive review of the existing evidence and on modeling studies predicting the benefits and harms of different screening programs. Some experts have criticized the use of modeling data in developing the guidelines. Others consider practical concerns in implementing the recommendation, such as how to actually select those patients eligible and refer them to screening.

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Medical Xpress  |  Jan 2, 2014

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Inflammation Markers Offer Clue About Lung Cancer Risk

Inflammation Markers Offer Clue About Lung Cancer Risk | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Increased inflammation may be a warning of elevated lung cancer risk. A recent study analyzed blood samples taken from over 1,000 patients getting screened for lung cancer. Half of the patients went on to develop lung cancer in the following years. Eleven chemical markers of inflammation in the patients’ blood were associated with an increased risk of developing lung cancer. The researchers developed an inflammation score based on the levels of four of these inflammation markers. Patients with the highest inflammation score were 2.8 times more likely to develop lung cancer than those with the lowest score (3.4 times more likely if the patients were current smokers). This inflammation score may therefore serve to identify high-risk patients in the future.

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ASCO Post  |  Dec 9, 2013

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Lung Cancer Scans Can Also Warn of Heart Disease Risk

Lung Cancer Scans Can Also Warn of Heart Disease Risk | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Computed tomography (CT) scans are used to screen for possible lung cancer, but they can also be used to assess patients’ risk of heart disease, recent evidence shows. Doctors can use images of a patient’s chest region to look for calcium deposits in the blood vessels that supply the heart. Heavier deposits are associated with greater heart disease risk. A study of over 1,500 people who had undergone lung cancer screening found that a simple visual inspection of their CT scan images for calcium deposits was as successful in identifying their relative heart disease risk as the current 'gold standard' heart disease risk analysis. These findings are particularly relevant because people at high risk of lung cancer (ie, older people with a history of heavy smoking) are also more likely to have heart disease.

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MedPage Today  |  Dec 4, 2013

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Glucophage Linked to Improved Survival for Cancer Patients with Diabetes

Patients with type 2 diabetes are at higher risk of several cancers. However, patients taking the diabetes drug metformin (Glucophage) have a lower risk of developing some kinds of cancer. Now, a review of several studies suggests that Glucophage also improves survival rates for patients who already have cancer. Patients with cancer and diabetes who took Glucophage had a lower risk of death overall, and of dying of cancer specifically, compared to patients receiving other diabetes medications. It is not certain that Glucophage indeed caused the survival benefit. Separate, independent factors could make patients both more likely to be prescribed Glucophage and to have better survival. However, because there is at least a strong possibility of a benefit, the review authors recommend Glucophage as the drug of choice for diabetes patients with cancer.

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Medscape  |  Nov 25, 2013

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Computer Program Helps Doctors Determine When It’s Time to Test Patients for Cancer

Computer Program Helps Doctors Determine When It’s Time to Test Patients for Cancer | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

A new computer program may soon help doctors decide whether patients should get tested for cancer based on their symptoms. The software is not meant to replace the physician’s judgment, but rather supplement it, developers say. Many general practitioners do not have specific cancer expertise, or the time to calculate each patient’s cancer risk in detail–a task made instantaneous by the computer program. The software also analyzes each symptom in the context of all other relevant information in a patient’s record–age, sex, smoking status, family history–along with any other symptoms reported during earlier visits. Ensuring timely testing for patients at risk of cancer is a critical step towards early treatment with a higher chance of success.

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Cancer Research UK | Nov 5, 2013

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FDG-PET Distinguishes Low- and High-Risk Lung Cancer Patients After Radiotherapy

FDG-PET Distinguishes Low- and High-Risk Lung Cancer Patients After Radiotherapy | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) scans may be able to detect early-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who are at high risk of treatment failure after stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT). A retrospective study examined patients with early-stage NSCLC who were ineligible for or refused surgery and were instead treated with SBRT. Patients with lower FDG-PET readings prior to SBRT treatment survived longer, and those whose FDG-PET readings changed more after SBRT were less likely to experience treatment failure. FDG-PET scans may therefore help identify which patients are at lower or higher risk of recurrence; high-risk patients may opt for additional treatment and/or more frequent surveillance after treatment. FDG-PET has shown similar predictive value in early-stage NSCLC treated with surgery.

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MedPage Today | Sep 24, 2013

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Gene Variations May Help Predict Response to Lung Cancer Treatment

Gene Variations May Help Predict Response to Lung Cancer Treatment | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

Researchers have discovered genetic variations that may predict risk of death and help direct treatment for lung cancer patients. The researchers analyzed the DNA of patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), looking for variations associated with survival. Four of the variants they identified were located on the same gene, called TNFRSF10B. Patients with these genetic variants had up to a 41% higher chance of death, especially if they were treated with surgery only. In contrast, if these patients received chemotherapy after surgery, their risk of death was not increased. The genetic variants may therefore be useful biomarkers for guiding treatment decisions.

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Medical Xpress | Aug 9, 2013

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The ASCO Post

The ASCO Post | Lung Cancer Dispatch | Scoop.it

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force posted its final evidence report and draft recommendation statement on screening for lung cancer. Based on the available evidence, the Task Force recommends screening people who are at high risk for lung cancer with annual low-dose CT (computed tomography) scans, which can prevent a substantial number of lung cancer-related deaths. This is a grade B draft recommendation.


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The ASCO Post. Jul 29, 2013.

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