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Breast Cancer - Palliative News

Many Talks on End-of-Life Wishes End in Confusion, Study Shows

Posted 18 hours ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 23, 2017 – You've filled out a living will, and designated a surrogate to make medical decisions if you're incapacitated. But, your end-of-life planning may not be done yet. That's because, according to a new study, your surrogate may still not have a clear idea about what you really want done in a crisis situation – even after you've discussed your wishes with them. In the study, seven out of every 10 surrogates didn't have an accurate understanding of their loved one's wishes regarding potentially life-altering medical treatment, even though both believed they had adequately discussed the topic. "There were a lot of surrogates in those pairs where they both said, 'yes, we've had this communication,' who didn't have a good understanding of the patient's goals of care," said lead researcher Dr. Terri Fried. She is a professor of geriatrics with the Yale School of ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer - Palliative

Is Radiation Therapy Overused in Breast Cancer Care?

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 14, 2017 – More than half of older American women with early breast cancer may get more radiation therapy than needed, which significantly boosts medical costs, a new study indicates. Analyzing 2011 data on breast cancer patients, researchers estimated $164 million could have been saved by ordering a shorter radiation course. "Women who were eligible for shorter radiation courses or omission of radiation were still often receiving longer and more costly radiation courses," said study leader Dr. Rachel Greenup. She's an assistant professor of surgery at Duke University Medical Center Cancer Institute in Durham, N.C. However, Greenup and other experts said the study results might not be applicable to today because more women are receiving shorter courses of radiation than in 2011. For the study, Greenup's team used data on 43,000 breast cancer patients age 50 and older ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Nausea/Vomiting - Radiation Induced, History - Radiation Therapy, Tamoxifen Hexal, Nolvadex, Soltamox, Tamone, Tamoxen, Genox, Nolvadex D, Tamofen, Tamosin, Emblon

'No One Dies Alone' Program Offers Comfort at Life's End

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 14, 2017 – Millions of older Americans live out their final hours alone in a hospital bed. But at some hospitals, a comforting presence at a patient's bedside is considered essential end-of-life medicine. So, if there are no friends or loved ones to keep vigil, a volunteer might fill the void. "It's amazing how much just having someone hold a hand makes a difference," said Rebecca Hixson, a registered nurse at Vanderbilt Hospital Medical Center in Nashville. Americans are living longer, with more seniors living alone – and dying alone. They may be single, childless, or getting treatment long distances away from their loved ones. A trauma patient who was flown to the Vanderbilt medical center is a case in point. "His family lived two states away. Once they left, they didn't have the money for gas to come back," said Hixson, clinical staff leader in the hospital's ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer - Palliative

Soy Safe, Even Protective, for Breast Cancer Survivors

Posted 17 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 7, 2017 – The pros and cons of soy for breast cancer patients have been debated for years. Now, research involving more than 6,200 breast cancer survivors finds that those who ate the most soy had a lower risk of death from all causes during the nearly 10-year follow-up period. "We didn't find any harmful effects of women diagnosed with breast cancer consuming soy in terms of mortality," said study leader Dr. Fang Fang Zhang. She's an assistant professor of epidemiology at Tufts University's Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy in Boston. "Overall, consuming higher levels of soy is associated with a 21 percent reduction in the risk of death compared to women who consumed soy at a lower level," she said. Concerns around soy's "risk/benefit" profile have arisen because the food has estrogen-like compounds called isoflavones. That's important, experts says, ... Read more

Related support groups: Hot Flashes, Breast Cancer, Menopausal Disorders, Postmenopausal Symptoms, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Soy, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative

Bad Diet in Youth Might Raise Risk of Early Breast Cancer

Posted 2 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 2, 2017 – A poor diet while young may do more than just make it tough to fit into a pair of jeans: New research suggests it might also raise a younger woman's risk for breast cancer. "A diet high in sugar, refined carbohydrates, and red and processed meat makes it more likely that you may experience early onset breast cancer," said study senior author Karin Michels. She is chair of epidemiology at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, in Los Angeles. An unhealthy diet appeared to increase that risk by more than one-third, but the findings can't prove cause-and-effect, Michels said. "We are talking about a link or association," she noted. The study tracked data from more than 45,000 women enrolled in the Nurses' Health Study II. All of the women completed food frequency questionnaires about their teen and early adult diets, and were followed up for 22 years. The ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Breast Cancer, Menopausal Disorders, Postmenopausal Symptoms, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Perimenopausal Symptoms, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Diagnosis and Investigation

Exercise a Powerful Ally for Breast Cancer Survivors

Posted 21 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 21, 2017 – For breast cancer survivors, exercise may help lower their chances of dying from the disease more than other healthy habits, a new review suggests. The Canadian researchers analyzed 67 published articles to see which habits made the most difference in reducing the risk of either breast cancer recurrence or death. Exercise came out on top, reducing the risk of breast cancer death by about 40 percent, said review author Dr. Ellen Warner, a medical oncologist at Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre and a professor at the University of Toronto. "It's similar to the magnitude of chemotherapy or hormone therapy," she said. "So, that's pretty powerful." However, the review did not prove that exercise causes breast cancer risk to drop. Besides exercise, the previous research looked at weight and weight gain, diet, smoking, alcohol and vitamin supplements. The new review ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, Breast Cancer, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation and Deficiency, Vitamin C, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Caltrate 600 with D, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Ascorbic Acid, Citracal + D, Calcium/Vitamin D, Citracal Petites, Osteolytic Bone Metastases of Breast Cancer, Ester-C, Cecon, Protexin, Oysco 500 with D, Oyster Shell Calcium

Cancer Survivors Gain From Web-Based Health Care

Posted 10 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 10, 2017 – Online- and phone-based health care offers a number of benefits for cancer survivors, British researchers report. The new study looked at previous research on cancer survivors' experiences with online and phone health contacts – what the researchers call telehealth. The review found that patients liked the flexibility and convenience of this method of staying in touch with their care providers because they could do so in a familiar, comfortable setting and with minimum disruption to their lives. The perceived anonymity of telehealth reduced patients' sense of vulnerability and some said they were more comfortable raising concerns in this setting than in face-to-face appointments. Negative aspects of telehealth mentioned by patients included not being able to meet their health care providers in person, while other patients said they couldn't use the service due ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Brain Tumor, Skin Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Stomach Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome, Testicular Cancer, Wilms' Tumor, Solid Tumors

Many Women Skip Mammograms After False-Positive Result

Posted 9 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 9, 2017 – The trauma of receiving a false-positive result from a mammogram may lead many women to delay or skip their next screening, a new study finds. A false-positive result means that an aberration on a mammogram looks like it might be cancer. But after tests – such as added imaging or biopsy – it turns out to be benign. In the meantime, however, the patient may go through distress and various procedures, and decide to delay or skip her next mammogram. That's a potentially fatal mistake, breast cancer experts said, because detecting tumors early can save lives. "Unfortunately, for women over age 50, just skipping a mammogram every other year would miss up to 30 percent of cancers," said Dr. Stefanie Zalasin, a breast imaging specialist who reviewed the new findings. "Reassuring a patient that the overwhelming majority of mammograms and even biopsies are normal can ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Diagnosis and Investigation, Osteolytic Bone Metastases of Breast Cancer, Body Imaging

Too Few High-Risk Women Tested for Breast Cancer Gene: Survey

Posted 7 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 7, 2017 – Though testing for two genes that raise breast cancer risk has been around for decades, a new survey finds many high-risk women don't get the test, often because they aren't told to by their doctors. Among women with the highest risk, about eight of 10 said they wanted testing for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations. But, "only about half of them actually got the testing they should get," said study author Dr. Allison Kurian, from Stanford University's School of Medicine. "Genetic cancer testing is not well matched to the medical needs of the patient, to a woman's risk of having a mutation," said Kurian, an associate professor of medicine and of health research and policy. Why the gap? About 56 percent of the high-risk women who were not tested said their doctors did not recommend it, the survey found. In addition to the test itself, genetic counseling can help ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Ovarian Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Diagnosis and Investigation, Osteolytic Bone Metastases of Breast Cancer

Breast Density May Be Leading Indicator of Cancer Risk

Posted 2 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 2, 2017 – Women whose breasts are predominantly made up of more dense, glandular tissue face higher odds for breast cancer, a new study finds. The researchers added that, based on their study of 200,000 women, breast density may be the most important gauge of breast cancer risk, eclipsing family history of the disease and other risk factors. "The most significant finding in this study is the impact of breast density on development of breast cancer in the population," said study senior author Dr. Karla Kerlikowske. She is a researcher in the department of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Still, not everyone is convinced that breast tissue density is the preeminent risk factor for breast cancer. Dr. Kristin Byrne is chief of breast imaging at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. She believes that the numbers in the ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Diagnosis and Investigation, Fibrocystic Breast Disease, Body Imaging, Tamoxifen Hexal, Nolvadex, Soltamox, Tamone, Tamoxen, Genox, Nolvadex D, Tamofen, Tamosin, Emblon

Many Breast Cancer Survivors Don't Get Life-Extending Therapy

Posted 2 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 2, 2017 – Hormonal therapies such as tamoxifen, or a class of drugs called aromatase inhibitors, can reduce the likelihood that women diagnosed with certain breast cancers will experience a recurrence of their disease. However, a new study finds these treatments – used in breast cancers that are responsive to hormones such as estrogen – are too seldom utilized or often used incorrectly. According to the research team, if all U.S. breast cancer survivors who needed them followed recommendations for hormone therapy, that could mean almost 15,000 lives saved over a decade. Unfortunately, these drugs are "still underused, and in some cases, misused – offered to patients who lack [estrogen] hormone receptors" on their tumor cells, explained study senior author Dr. Dezheng Huo. He's associate professor of public health sciences at the University of Chicago. As the ... Read more

Related support groups: Nausea/Vomiting, Hot Flashes, Breast Cancer, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Femara, Anastrozole, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Letrozole, Aromasin, Exemestane, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Tamoxifen Hexal, Emblon, Tamoxen, Genox, Teslac, Nolvadex D, Testolactone

Half Report Severe Side Effects From Breast Cancer Therapy

Posted 24 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 24, 2017 – About half of early stage breast cancer patients experience severe side effects from their treatment, a new study finds. "It's in patients' best interest to receive their treatments on time and on schedule, whenever possible, to give them the best possible outcome," said study author Dr. Steven Katz. He's professor of health management and policy at the University of Michigan. "Unscheduled care for toxicities [side effects] – including clinic visits, emergency department visits and hospital stays – are expensive, inconvenient and disruptive to both doctors and patients. We need to avoid them whenever possible," Katz said in a university news release. For the study, researchers surveyed almost 2,000 early stage breast cancer patients an average of seven months after diagnosis. The women were asked to rate the severity of seven common treatment side effects: ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Breast Cancer, Fluorouracil, Efudex, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Carac, Herceptin, Taxol, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Taxotere, Carboplatin, Cytoxan, Cyclophosphamide, Paclitaxel, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Fluoroplex, Doxorubicin, Adriamycin, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Surgical Prophylaxis

When Loved One Has Breast Cancer, Partner Suffers, Too

Posted 24 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 23, 2017 – Breast cancer can take a heavy toll on the partners of patients, too, a new study finds. The stress of managing breast cancer care provokes symptoms of anxiety in more than 42 percent of partners and caregivers. And this stress-induced anxiety can last years after their loved one's illness, researchers found. Those who coped poorly with the bad news fared even worse, according to the study. Partners were more than twice as likely to report anxiety if they became emotionally withdrawn, went into denial about the situation, turned to drink, started blaming others for their problems or grew agitated and aggressive, said lead researcher Nancy Borstelmann. "Caregivers' mental health and how they cope needs attention," Borstelmann said. "This not only has implications for their own well-being, but also survivors' health and quality of life." Borstelmann is director of ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Breast Cancer, Drug Dependence, Alcohol Dependence, Agitation, Agitated State, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Alcoholism, Hangover, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Could Grilled, Smoked Meats Lower Survival After Breast Cancer?

Posted 19 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 18, 2017 – Research has suggested that diets high in barbecued, grilled and smoked meats could increase the risk of breast cancer. Now, a new study finds these cooking methods may also lower survival after a breast cancer diagnosis. The study involved more than 1,500 women who had been diagnosed with the cancer in 1996 and 1997. The study participants were followed for nearly 20 years. Eating lots of grilled, barbecued or smoked meat before their cancer diagnosis was linked with a 23 percent increased risk of dying from any cause during the follow-up period compared with low intake, the researchers said. And continuing to eat lots of meat cooked in this fashion after breast cancer seemed to increase those odds, the findings suggested. Beef, pork and lamb, in particular, were singled out as potentially troublesome. Grilling, smoking and cooking meats at high temperatures ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Breast Cancer - Palliative

'Chemo Brain' Lasts for Months in Many Breast Cancer Survivors

Posted 11 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 11, 2017 – "Chemo brain" – the mental fog common after breast cancer treatment – can persist for six months, new research shows. The finding comes from one of the largest studies to date to look at chemotherapy-related thinking problems that plague many women treated for breast cancer. Those problems can include memory lapses, attention issues and difficulty processing information. When researchers compared hundreds of U.S. women six months after chemotherapy ended with hundreds of healthy women, they found more than one-third of the chemotherapy group had a decline in thinking scores versus less than 15 percent of the others. "The bottom line is, this is a real problem, patients are having difficulties and we need to acknowledge it is one of the difficulties of treatment," said Dr. Patricia Ganz. Ganz is director of cancer prevention and control research at the ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Medroxyprogesterone, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Lupron Depot, Femara, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Anastrozole, Zoladex, Letrozole, Evista, Megestrol, Megace, Herceptin, Aromasin, Afinitor

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