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Many Cancer Patients Skimp on Treatment Due to Cost

Posted 24 Oct 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 24, 2017 – The high cost of cancer care in the United States has led more than one-quarter of patients to cut back on some part of their treatment, a new survey reveals. Commissioned by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), the report found that 27 percent of cancer survivors or close relatives of a cancer patient said they'd skipped doctor visits or taken other steps to reduce health costs. To save money, nearly one in 10 said they had avoided doctor appointments. Eight percent had refused treatment; postponed filling or not filled prescriptions; or skipped doses of prescribed medications. And 7 percent said they had cut pills in half, according to the survey of more than 4,000 adults. Such measures can jeopardize treatment success, ASCO says. "We should all be alarmed that Americans are potentially risking not only their health, but also their lives, due to ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Depo-Provera, Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Medroxyprogesterone, Tamoxifen, Fluorouracil, Arimidex, Lupron Depot, Femara, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Anastrozole, Votrient, Letrozole, Tarceva

Breast Cancer More Lethal for Blacks Than Whites

Posted 16 Oct 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 16, 2017 – Differences in insurance are a major reason why black women are more likely to die of breast cancer than white women in the United States, a new study contends. "We found that differences in insurance explained one-third of the total excess risk of death in non-elderly black women compared to white women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer, while differences in tumor characteristics explained approximately one-fifth of the excess risk," lead study author Ahmedin Jemal, of the American Cancer Society (ACS), and colleagues wrote. In 2014, breast cancer death rates were 41 percent higher among black women than among white women in the United States, the researchers said. To learn more about this disparity, the investigators looked at information on more than 550,000 non-elderly women with early stage breast cancer. Black women were more likely to be uninsured ... Read more

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

Could Hormone Supplements for Menopause Make a Comeback?

Posted 12 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 12, 2017 – The door may be opening again for menopausal women suffering from hot flashes and night sweats to receive some relief from a source once thought too dangerous to consider, researchers say. Hormone replacement therapy to treat symptoms of menopause does not increase a woman's risk of early death – either overall or specifically from cancer or heart disease, according to long-term findings from the largest clinical trial conducted on hormone therapy. Women who took estrogen for an average of seven years or combination estrogen and progesterone therapy for an average of five years had no increased risk of death after 18 years of follow-up, compared with women given an inactive placebo, the researchers found. The clinical trial "provides support for the use of hormone therapy for treatment of bothersome and distressing hot flashes, night sweats and other ... Read more

Related support groups: Hot Flashes, Menopausal Disorders, Estradiol, Premarin, Estrace, Ethinyl Estradiol, Postmenopausal Symptoms, Vagifem, Estrace Vaginal Cream, Atrophic Vaginitis, Vivelle, Climara, Estring, Vivelle-Dot, Premarin Vaginal, Estradiol Patch, Perimenopausal Symptoms, Minivelle, Evamist, Cenestin

Alternative Medicine Alone as Cancer Treatment Linked to Lowered Survival

Posted 17 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 17, 2017 – People who choose alternative medicine over traditional cancer treatments for curable cancers have a higher risk of dying early, researchers report. "We now have evidence to suggest that using alternative medicine in place of proven cancer therapies results in worse survival," said study lead author Dr. Skyler Johnson from Yale School of Medicine and Yale Cancer Center. "It is our hope that this information can be used by patients and physicians when discussing the impact of cancer treatment decisions on survival," Johnson said in a school news release. Steve Jobs, co-founder and former CEO of Apple, is likely the most famous person who initially chose alternative medicine as a sole treatment. He eventually turned back to conventional medicine when the alternative medicine treatment didn't keep his pancreatic cancer at bay. But at that point, the cancer had ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Depo-Provera, Provera, Methotrexate, Lupron, Medroxyprogesterone, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Femara, Anastrozole, Letrozole, Xeloda, Pancreatic Cancer, Zoladex, Megace, Megestrol, Evista, Hydroxyurea

Treatment Costs Can Be Another Blow to Cancer Patients

Posted 27 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 27, 2017 – The emotional and physical costs of cancer can be staggering. But the financial side of cancer is also a great burden, with many patients in the United States struggling to pay for treatment, new research reveals. "The current health law has greatly improved access to meaningful health coverage for cancer patients, survivors and all those with chronic diseases," Chris Hansen, president of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, said in a network news release. "Yet costs remain a challenge for those facing cancer. Our country and our lawmakers should come together to find bipartisan solutions that begin to address patient costs without sacrificing the quality of coverage," he urged. Researchers surveyed financial navigators at 11 hospitals in nine states. Financial navigators – typically trained social workers or nurses – help cancer patients ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Depo-Provera, Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Medroxyprogesterone, Prostate Cancer, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Lupron Depot, Femara, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Anastrozole, Brain Tumor, Letrozole, Skin Cancer, Tarceva

Doctors' Group Offers Ideas for Easing Cancer Costs

Posted 19 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 19, 2017 – New cancer drugs routinely cost $100,000 a year or more, and older cancer drugs are rising in price, too. Now, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has some suggestions for easing patients' money woes. The proposals include allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices, legalizing the importation of drugs, and adopting bundled, or group, payment programs. In the new policy statement, ASCO also says it supports creation of a panel of "stakeholders" in health care to determine the effectiveness of its proposals. Such a group might also outline a uniform approach for assessing the value of drugs. "In what, undoubtedly, is one of the most difficult times in their lives, individuals with cancer should be focused on getting the best care possible, not worrying about financial strain on their families," said Dr. Clifford Hudis. He's CEO of ASCO, a leading ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Depo-Provera, Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Medroxyprogesterone, Prostate Cancer, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Femara, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Anastrozole, Votrient, Brain Tumor, Letrozole

Most Breast Cancer Patients Have Help Choosing Treatments

Posted 10 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 10, 2017 – Most women who've been diagnosed with breast cancer don't go it alone. Many breast cancer patients depend on family and friends to help them make treatment decisions, get to doctor appointments and seek out other resources. A new study finds half of women rely on three or more people to help them through it. "People just diagnosed with cancer are often scared and overwhelmed. Having another person to help them process information is important," said study lead author Lauren Wallner, an assistant professor of general medicine and epidemiology at the University of Michigan. "Physicians need to recognize that women involve other people in their treatment decisions," she added in a university news release. "These people represent an important group to provide information about treatment options." For the study, the researchers surveyed about 2,500 women who had ... Read more

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

FDA Widens Access to 'Cooling Cap' to Stop Hair Loss in Cancer Patients

Posted 5 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 5, 2017 – More cancer patients may be able to ward off hair loss during chemotherapy treatment. A cooling cap approved in 2015 for use in breast cancer patients has won expanded approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The DigniCap Cooling System can now be used for patients with solid tumors, the FDA announced. The computer-controlled cap contains liquid that circulates and cools the scalp, narrowing blood vessels. This reduces how much of the chemotherapy drugs reach hair follicle cells, the FDA said. Cooling also decreases activity of hair follicles and slows cell division. The result: Chemo drugs don't affect them as much, according to the FDA. Hair loss is a common side effect of chemotherapy, especially during treatment of most solid tumor cancers. Hair may fall out all at once, little by little or become thin. It's usually temporary – and upsetting. ... Read more

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

Publicly Funded Cancer Trials Gained Americans 3 Million More Years

Posted 6 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 6, 2017 – Public-funded trials have significantly extended the lives of people diagnosed with cancer, according to new research. SWOG, the clinical trials network funded by the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI), has involved more than 200,000 patient volunteers. These trials have led to approval of 14 new cancer drugs and more than 100 changes to cancer care standards. All told, the clinical trials studied extended life by 3.34 million years, the study found. SWOG estimates the dollar return on investment from federal funding at $125 for each year of life gained. "A lot of people with cancer have lived longer because of the therapies tested in our publicly funded trials," study leader Joseph Unger said in a SWOG news release. He is an assistant member of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center's Cancer Prevention Program in Seattle. "At the same time, the cost of ... Read more

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

Hormone Replacement Therapy Tied to Hearing Loss

Posted 12 May 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 12, 2017 – Hearing loss has been linked to several factors associated with menopause, a new study says. One factor is your age at menopause. An older age is tied to a higher risk of hearing troubles. And, a second factor is the use of oral hormone therapy to ease some of the symptoms of menopause. The researchers also found that the longer a woman used hormone therapy, the greater the odds of hearing issues. Hearing loss was already known to be more common in women after menopause, a time when natural hormone levels drop. Because of this, doctors had suspected that the use of oral hormone therapy might offer some protection against menopause-linked hearing loss, the researchers said. "The finding from this observational study that women who underwent menopause at a later age and used oral hormone therapy had greater hearing loss was unexpected but should lead to more ... Read more

Related support groups: Plan B, Depo-Provera, Mirena, Nexplanon, Provera, Implanon, Hot Flashes, Plan B One-Step, Menopausal Disorders, Estradiol, Medroxyprogesterone, Premarin, Levonorgestrel, Estrace, Ethinyl Estradiol, Progesterone, Skyla, Norethindrone, Postmenopausal Symptoms, Vagifem

HRT Won't Lower Women's Alzheimer's Risk, Study Finds

Posted 16 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 16, 2017 – Women who use hormone therapy after menopause may not have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's, a new study suggests. However, there was some evidence that long-term use – over a decade – might be tied to a lower risk of the memory-robbing brain disease. But the results were far from definitive, the researchers added. The study is the latest to delve into the question of whether menopausal hormone therapy can benefit women's brains. Research so far has yielded conflicting findings. On one hand, a number of trials have found no brain benefits for women using hormone therapy, said Dr. JoAnn Pinkerton, executive director of the North American Menopause Society. On the other hand, small trials have found that when hormone therapy is given after surgical menopause, women can see "cognitive benefits," said Pinkerton, who was not involved in the new study. On ... Read more

Related support groups: Plan B, Depo-Provera, Mirena, Nexplanon, NuvaRing, Provera, Sprintec, Implanon, Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Microgestin Fe 1/20, Hot Flashes, Tri-Sprintec, Yasmin, Plan B One-Step, Loestrin 24 Fe, Ortho Evra, TriNessa, Menopausal Disorders, Mononessa, Lutera

Fat Near the Heart a Hazard for Postmenopausal Women

Posted 31 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 31, 2017 – When a certain type of fat collects around the heart, it may be a sign of developing heart disease in postmenopausal women, a new study suggests. As estrogen levels fall during menopause, deposits of "paracardial" fat increase, the researchers found. This may cause more calcium build-up in the heart's arteries, an early sign of heart disease. Paracardial fat sits in pockets around the heart. These pockets lie between the heart and another type of fat that covers the heart called epicardial fat, the study authors explained. Epicardial fat provides energy to the heart, but paracardial fat has no known beneficial function, the researchers said. "We are showing for the first time that paracardial fat is associated with greater risk of calcification [calcium build-up] in postmenopausal women, more than in premenopausal women," said lead researcher Samar El Khoudary. ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Hot Flashes, Heart Disease, Menopausal Disorders, High Cholesterol, Estradiol, Premarin, Estrace, Ethinyl Estradiol, Postmenopausal Symptoms, Vagifem, Estrace Vaginal Cream, Atrophic Vaginitis, Vivelle, Climara, Estring, Hypertriglyceridemia, Vivelle-Dot, Premarin Vaginal, Estradiol Patch

'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, Depo-Provera, Provera, Breast Cancer, Lupron, Medroxyprogesterone, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Lupron Depot, Femara, Anastrozole, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Letrozole, Megace, Zoladex, Megestrol, Evista, Herceptin, Aromasin, Mild Cognitive Impairment

Study Casts More Doubt on Value of Mammograms

Posted 10 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 9, 2017 – Mammograms frequently detect small breast tumors that might never become life-threatening, causing women to receive treatment they likely don't need, a new Danish study finds. About one in every three women between the ages of 50 and 69 who was diagnosed with breast cancer wound up having a tumor that posed no immediate threat to her health, the researchers reported. At the same time, mammography did not reduce the number of advanced breast cancers found in women in the study. "This means that breast screening is unlikely to improve breast cancer survival or reduce the use of invasive surgery," said study author Dr. Karsten Juhl Jorgensen, deputy director of research for the Nordic Cochrane Center at the Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen. "It also means that breast screening leads to unnecessary detection and treatment of many breast cancers." Dr. Otis Brawley, chief ... Read more

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

New Drug Combo Shows Promise Curbing Tough-to-Treat Breast Cancer

Posted 8 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 8, 2016 – In women with a certain form of tough-to-treat breast cancer, treatment with a combination of two drugs appeared to keep the cancer at bay longer – from about five months to 10, a new study says. The cancer is known as "advanced hormone receptor positive, HER 2 negative" breast cancer. Women with these tumors are often given drugs called aromatase inhibitors, which work by reducing estrogen in the body and slowing the growth of the cancer. However, patients commonly develop resistance to aromatase inhibitor drugs, and they stop working. This is also known as endocrine therapy resistance. The new research may offer these patients some hope, researchers said. "Our study has shown that combining a newer medicine called everolimus [Afinitor] with a more established medicine, fulvestrant [Faslodex], has demonstrated benefit in aromatase inhibitor resistant breast ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Estradiol, Premarin, Estrace, Ethinyl Estradiol, Arimidex, Femara, Vagifem, Estrace Vaginal Cream, Anastrozole, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Vivelle, Letrozole, Climara, Estring, Vivelle-Dot, Premarin Vaginal, Estradiol Patch, Aromasin, Afinitor

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