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U.S. Pays Highest Prices for Cancer Meds: Study

Posted 6 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 6, 2016 – The United States pays the highest prices in the world for generic and brand-name cancer drugs, a new study has found. However, as the world's wealthiest nation, the United States is better able to pay for those pricey drugs than poorer countries with somewhat lower medication prices, added study lead author Dr. Daniel Goldstein. People in China and India are much less able to afford cancer drugs than Americans, he said, even though U.S. monthly drug prices are about three to six times higher in the United States. That doesn't mean America came out on top in overall drug affordability, however. Developed nations such as Australia, England and Israel had the "best deal" in the world on cancer drugs, thanks to government programs that regulate drug pricing, the study found. "America is the wealthiest nation, but its drug prices are significantly higher – so much ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Femara, Lung Cancer, Gleevec, Colorectal Cancer, Isotretinoin, Rituxan, Claravis

HIV Patients Less Likely to Get Treatment for Cancer: Study

Posted 17 May 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 17, 2016 – While powerful HIV medications are granting longer lives to many people infected with the virus, a new U.S. study shows these same patients are less likely to get treatment for cancer if it develops. It's not clear why the difference exists. It could reflect the decisions of physicians, patients or both. Whatever the case, the finding confirms that the gap persists even when patients have private insurance or are otherwise healthy, the study authors said. Previous research has suggested that "people with well-controlled HIV infection should be treated similarly to patients without HIV," said study author Dr. Gita Suneja. However, "even looking at cancer patients with private health insurance only, we saw that those with HIV infection were less likely to receive cancer treatment for many common cancer types," said Suneja. She is an assistant professor of ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, HIV Infection, Fluorouracil, Lung Cancer, Xeloda, Hydroxyurea, Mercaptopurine, Hydrea, Carboplatin, Cisplatin, Cytoxan, Temodar, Cyclophosphamide, Dacogen, Bendamustine, Oxaliplatin, Treanda, Gemcitabine, Gemzar

Could Talk Therapy Ease Chemo-Related Memory Issues?

Posted 2 May 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, May 2, 2016 – A type of psychotherapy might help cancer survivors deal with the long-term thinking problems some experience after chemotherapy, researchers say. It's estimated that about half of those who undergo chemotherapy for cancer develop what's often called "chemo brain." For instance, they may have trouble following conversations or remembering the steps in a project, according to background notes with the new study. Although usually mild, these changes can affect quality of life, job performance and relationships, said the researchers from the Eastern Maine Medical Center and Lafayette Family Cancer Center in Bangor, Maine. The researchers developed a cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) program called Memory and Attention Adaptation Training to help cancer survivors prevent or manage these memory problems. Their study involved 47 breast cancer survivors who underwent ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Fluorouracil, Lung Cancer, Gleevec, Colorectal Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Brain Tumor, Melanoma, Xeloda, Pancreatic Cancer, Skin Cancer, Tasigna, Endometrial Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Hydroxyurea

Fewer Childhood Cancer Survivors Dying From 'Late' Effects

Posted 13 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 13, 2016 – Fewer childhood cancer survivors are dying years later from lingering effects of the treatment that conquered their cancer, a new study finds. Experts called the report, published in the Jan. 14 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, "very good news." "The findings substantiate what experts in the field have hoped would be true," said lead researcher Dr. Gregory Armstrong, of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, in Memphis, Tenn. Survival rates from many childhood cancers are high, but survivors still face what doctors call "late effects" – health problems that develop months to years after the cancer treatment has ended. Among U.S. children who survived cancer back in the 1970s and '80s, 18 percent died within the next 25 years, Armstrong said. Sometimes, the initial cancer comes back. Often though, the health issues are related to the very ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, Fluorouracil, Xeloda, Hydroxyurea, Mercaptopurine, Hydrea, Carboplatin, Cisplatin, Cytoxan, Dacogen, Cyclophosphamide, Temodar, Oxaliplatin, Bendamustine, Treanda, Gemcitabine, Capecitabine, Hodgkin's Lymphoma, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Childhood Cancer Treatment May Raise Adult Heart Disease Risk

Posted 5 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 4, 2016 – Children who survive cancer may face a higher risk of heart disease as adults, new research suggests. The lingering effects of the treatments that saved their lives as children may trigger the development of heart abnormalities that might not cause apparent symptoms, the researchers explained. The investigators found that heart disease appears to affect between 3 percent and 24 percent of pediatric cancer survivors by the time they reach their 30s. Those figures rose to between 10 and 37 percent among patients 40 and older, the study found. However, while the study revealed a link between childhood cancer treatment and later heart disease, it didn't prove cause-and-effect. "The prevalence of these cardiac findings might be expected in an older adult population, but not necessarily in this young a population," said study lead author Dr. Daniel Mulrooney. ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Heart Disease, Methotrexate, Fluorouracil, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Xeloda, Cardiomyopathy, Hydroxyurea, Left Ventricular Dysfunction, Mercaptopurine, Hydrea, Carboplatin, Cisplatin, Cytoxan, Temodar, Dacogen, Cyclophosphamide, Oxaliplatin, Bendamustine, Treanda

Researchers Focus on Risk Factors for Leukemia After Breast Cancer Treatment

Posted 7 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 7, 2015 – Researchers say they're zeroing in on factors that may increase the risk of leukemia after breast cancer treatment. The findings are a step forward in determining ways to prevent this complication in breast cancer survivors. While the breast cancer treatments target malignant cells, they can also affect healthy cells and could increase the risk of leukemia later, the researchers said. The scientists looked at 88 breast cancer survivors with treatment-related leukemia and found that many had a personal and family history of cancer, suggesting a genetic susceptibility to cancer. Also, 20 percent of the women had an inherited gene mutation that increases the risk of breast cancer, according to the study published Dec. 7 in the journal Cancer. "The findings justify a long-term, follow-up study of women with and without inherited breast cancer gene mutations who are ... Read more

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

U.S. Oncologists Decry High Cost of Cancer Drugs

Posted 23 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 23, 2015 – Soaring costs for cancer drugs are hurting patient care in the United States, a group of top oncologists claim. "High cancer-drug prices are affecting the care of patients with cancer and our health care system," Dr. Ayalew Tefferi, a hematologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said in a Mayo news release. Tefferi and his colleagues made a number of recommendations on how to address the problem in a commentary published July 23 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices is one of the suggestions the team of 118 leading cancer experts offered as a possible solution. Along with their recommendations, the group also expressed support for a patient-based grassroots movement on change.org that is demanding action on the issue. "The average gross household income in the U.S. is about $52,000 per year. For an insured patient with ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Lupron, Prostate Cancer, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Femara, Lupron Depot, Lung Cancer, Gleevec, Colorectal Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Isotretinoin

Less Chemo for Obese Ovarian Cancer Patients Linked to Worse Survival Rates

Posted 6 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 6, 2015 – Ovarian cancer patients who are overweight or obese are often given lower doses of chemotherapy per pound of body weight, but this may reduce the odds of survival, a new study suggests. "There is a lot of uncertainty in what proper chemotherapy dosing levels should be for overweight and obese patients, based on concerns that using the full dose based on weight or body size could be too toxic," study author Dr. Elisa Bandera, an epidemiologist at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, explained in an institute news release. "Our study is the first to evaluate the impact of dose reduction in survival after an ovarian cancer diagnosis in normal weight, overweight and obese women," Bandera said. "We found that for each body mass index category, ovarian cancer patients with dose reduction experienced a poorer survival rate." The study involved 806 women with ovarian ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Ovarian Cancer, Taxol, Carboplatin, Paclitaxel, Paraplatin, Onxol, Carboplatin Novaplus

FDA Medwatch Alert: Injectable Products by Mylan: Recall - Presence of Particulate Matter

Posted 25 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

including certain lots of: Gemcitabine for Injection Carboplatin Injection Methotrexate Injection Cytarabine Injection See the press release for a listing of the product strength, NDC, and lot numbers affected by this recall. Some products may be packaged with a Pfizer Injectables label (see Background below)   [Posted 04/24/2015] ISSUE: Mylan N.V. is conducting a voluntary nationwide recall to the hospital/user level of select lots of injectable products due to the presence of visible foreign particulate matter observed during testing of retention samples. Administration of a sterile injectable that has foreign particulates has the potential of severe health consequences. Intrathecal administration could result in a life threatening adverse event or result in permanent impairment of a body function. Intravenous administration has the potential to damage and/or obstruct blood ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, Carboplatin, Gemzar, Gemcitabine, Cytarabine, Trexall, Cytosar-U, Cytosar, Methotrexate LPF Sodium, Paraplatin, Otrexup, Tarabine PFS, Folex PFS, Rheumatrex Dose Pack, Carboplatin Novaplus, Rasuvo

Medicines Are Biggest Culprit in Fatal Allergic Reactions: Study

Posted 10 Oct 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Oct. 9, 2014 – Although food allergies have garnered a lot of attention lately, a new study reports that medications are actually the biggest cause of sudden deaths related to allergy. Over a little more than a decade, nearly 60 percent of the allergy-related deaths were caused by medications, while less than 7 percent were caused by food allergies, the study found. "Medications can be dangerous," said study researcher Dr. Elina Jerschow, director of the Drug Allergy Center at Montefiore Medical Center and assistant professor of medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in New York City. While research from other countries has reported medications as a major culprit in anaphylaxis-related deaths, Jerschow said, the problem has been less defined in the United States. One reason is that there is no national registry for anaphylaxis deaths, she said. The study was ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Depo-Provera, Amoxicillin, Metronidazole, Doxycycline, Cephalexin, Clindamycin, Penicillin, Bactrim, Methotrexate, Azithromycin, Cipro, Ciprofloxacin, Accutane, Augmentin, Levaquin, Lupron, Flagyl, Keflex, Zithromax

New Treatment for Aggressive Breast Cancer Shows Some Promise

Posted 11 Dec 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 11, 2013 – Women with aggressive breast cancer who receive combination targeted therapy with chemotherapy prior to surgery have a slightly improved chance of staying cancer-free, researchers say. However, the improvement was not statistically significant and the jury is still out on combination treatment, said lead researcher Dr. Martine Piccart-Gebhart, chair of the Breast International Group, in Brussels. "I don't think that tomorrow we should switch to a new standard of care," she said. Piccart-Gebhart presented her findings Wednesday at the 2013 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, alongside other research that investigated ways to improve treatment for women with HER2-positive breast cancer. This aggressive form of cancer is linked to a genetic irregularity. Other researchers reported the following: The targeted drug trastuzumab (Herceptin) worked better in ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Herceptin, Taxotere, Carboplatin, Docetaxel, Tykerb, Trastuzumab, Lapatinib, Paraplatin, Docefrez, Carboplatin Novaplus

Kidney Damage a Risk of Some Childhood Cancer Treatments, Finds Study

Posted 24 Sep 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 24 – Some adult survivors of childhood cancer are at increased risk for kidney problems, a new study says. The study included more than 1,100 adults, aged 18 and older, who were followed for five to 42 years after being diagnosed and treated for childhood cancer. The researchers examined the long-term effects of kidney-damaging treatments, including the chemotherapy drugs ifosfamide, cisplatin, carboplatin, high-dose methotrexate and high-dose cyclophosphamide; radiation therapy to the kidney region; and partial or complete surgical removal of the kidney (nephrectomy). Compared with patients who did not receive kidney-damaging treatments, those who were treated with ifosfamide or cisplatin and those who underwent nephrectomy had poorer kidney function, which persisted throughout the follow-up period. The researchers also found that patients treated with high doses of ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, Renal Failure, Carboplatin, Cisplatin, Cytoxan, Cyclophosphamide, Platinol, Trexall, Methotrexate LPF Sodium, Rheumatrex Dose Pack, Cytoxan Lyophilized, Ifex, Neosar, Platinol-AQ, Folex PFS, Paraplatin, Carboplatin Novaplus, Ifosfamide

Cancer Chemotherapy Tied to Slight Rise in Risk for Leukemia

Posted 14 Feb 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 14 – Chemotherapy can be a lifesaver for thousands of cancer patients, but a new study suggests that it might slightly raise the odds for a type of leukemia later in life. Over the past 30 years, the risk for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) has increased for patients who underwent chemotherapy for certain forms of cancer, particularly non-Hodgkin lymphoma, the new study found. On the other hand, the researchers from the U.S. National Cancer Institute said other cancer survivors may have a reduced risk for AML due to a change in chemotherapy agents that occurred decades ago. One expert not connected to the study stressed that cancer patients need to put the findings into perspective. "It's important to realize that the risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia related to prior chemotherapy is small and increases with the number of chemotherapy treatments given over time," ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Accutane, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Tretinoin, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Femara, Gleevec, Isotretinoin, Rituxan, Claravis, Votrient, Anastrozole, Avastin

FDA Medwatch Alert: Carboplatin Injection by Hospira: Recall - Visible Particulate Matter Identified

Posted 17 Dec 2012 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: Hospira, Inc. is further informing the general public about a previously communicated voluntary user-level recall of three lots of Carboplatin Injection due to visible particulates identified during a retain sample inspection. Findings have identified the particles as Carboplatin crystals. If particulate matter from crystallization is injected into a patient, it may potentially become lodged in and obstruct blood vessels, potentially causing local infarction, thromboembolism and vasculitis. Chronically, following sequestration, granulomatous formation in the lungs is possible. BACKGROUND: Carboplatin Injection is indicated for the initial treatment of advanced ovarian carcinoma in established combination with other approved chemotherapeutic agents. Carboplatin Injection is indicated for the palliative treatment of patients with ovarian carcinoma recurrent after prior ... Read more

Related support groups: Ovarian Cancer, Carboplatin, Paraplatin, Carboplatin Novaplus

FDA Medwatch Alert: Hospira Injectable Drug Products: Recall - Visible Particulates from Defective Glass Vials

Posted 18 Jul 2012 by Drugs.com

Including certain lots of the following products: carboplatin cytarabine paclitaxel methotrexate [Posted 07/16/2012] ISSUE: Hospira and FDA notified healthcare professional of a nationwide recall of certain injectable drug products, due to visible particles embedded in the glass located at the neck of the vial. There may be potential for product to come into contact with the embedded particles and the particles may become dislodged into the solution. In the event in which particulate matter could be injected into a patient, there may be the potential for patient injury where medical intervention may be required. Signs and symptoms might include bleeding, bruising, inflammation, itching, rash, chest pain and respiratory symptoms. See the Press Release for a listing of affected product lot numbers and expiration dates. BACKGROUND: These products were distributed nationwide to ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Methotrexate, Taxol, Carboplatin, Paclitaxel, Cytarabine, Cytosar-U, Methotrexate LPF Sodium, Cytosar, Trexall, Paraplatin, Tarabine PFS, Folex PFS, Onxol, Rheumatrex Dose Pack, Carboplatin Novaplus

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