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Some Brain Cancer Patients Have Radiation Options: Study

Posted 26 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 – For some brain cancer patients, pinpoint radiation of tumors, known as stereotactic radiosurgery, appears to do less damage to mental abilities than whole brain radiation, a new study finds. Neither technique cures cancer that has spread to the brain, but both temporarily stop tumors from growing and equally extend survival, researchers said. Stereotactic radiosurgery is nonsurgical radiation that precisely targets tumor areas. When just a few lesions exist, this directed type of radiation appears to provide a better quality of life by not altering short-term memory and thinking skills, the study found. "We now have a better understanding of the toxicity of whole brain radiation, and we know that the toxicity of whole brain radiation is worse for patients than the recurrence of their cancer," said lead researcher Dr. Paul Brown, from the department of radiation ... Read more

Related support groups: Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Malignant Glioma, History - Radiation Therapy, Angioblastoma

Brain Cancer Treatment Shows Promise in Early Trial

Posted 1 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 1, 2016 – An experimental viral treatment may extend the lives of patients with a hard-to-treat brain cancer, researchers say. For the phase 1 study, patients with recurrent glioblastoma, the most common and aggressive brain tumor, were injected with an engineered virus. Survival was 13.6 months among 43 patients treated with the viral therapy, compared with 7.1 months for patients who did not receive the new therapy, according to the study. "For the first time, this clinical data shows that this treatment, used in combination with an antifungal drug, kills cancer cells and appears to activate the immune system against them while sparing healthy cells," said study co-leader Dr. Timothy Cloughesy. He is director of the neuro-oncology program at the University of California, Los Angeles. "This approach also has potential in additional types of the disease, such as ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Diagnosis and Investigation, Malignant Glioma, Head Imaging

NIH Experts Cast Doubt on Rat Study Linking Cellphones, Tumors

Posted 27 May 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 27, 2016 – Experts at the U.S. National Institutes of Health are questioning the validity of a widely reported study in rats that linked cellphone radiation to tumors. The study, released Friday by the federal government's National Toxicology Program (NTP), found "low incidences" of two types of tumors in male rats exposed to the type of radio frequencies emitted by cellphones, the Wall Street Journal reported. The two types of tumors were glioma brain cancer and benign schwannomas of the heart, according to the $25 million study that is one of the largest and most comprehensive to assess the health impacts of cellphones. "Given the widespread global usage of mobile communications among users of all ages, even a very small increase in the incidence of disease resulting from exposure to [radio-frequency radiation] could have broad implications for public health," according ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Brain Tumor, Diagnosis and Investigation, Malignant Glioma

Researchers Find 8 Immune Genes in Aggressive Brain Cancer

Posted 25 May 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 25, 2016 – Researchers have identified immune genes that may affect how long people live after diagnosis with a common type of brain cancer. If confirmed in other studies, the researchers say their findings could lead to improved treatment in the future. The type of brain cancer in the study is glioblastoma multiforme, a fast-growing tumor. People with this type of cancer survive an average of less than two years, even after treatment with surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, the study authors said. "We've had luck with other types of cancer in removing the brakes on the immune system to allow it to fight the tumors, but this has not been the case with glioblastoma," said study author Dr. Anhua Wu, of First Hospital of China Medical University in Shenyang, China. "If our discovery of these genes is validated in other studies, we could use this 'gene signature' to ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Brain Tumor, Nausea/Vomiting - Chemotherapy Induced, Head & Neck Surgery, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Diagnosis and Investigation, Malignant Glioma, Head Imaging

FDA Medwatch Alert: BiCNU (carmustine for injection): FDA Alert - Counterfeit Product Discovered in Some Foreign Countries

Posted 16 May 2016 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: FDA is informing health care professionals that a counterfeit version of the FDA approved cancer drug, BiCNU (carmustine for injection) 100 mg, has been detected in some foreign countries. There is no indication at this time that counterfeit BiCNU has entered the legitimate U.S. drug supply chain and no indication that any U.S. patients have received counterfeit BiCNU. See the FDA Alert for more information, including product photos and affected lot numbers. BACKGROUND: The authentic product is approved to treat different types of brain cancer, multiple myeloma, and lymphoma (Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s). BiCNU is manufactured by Emcure Pharmaceuticals Ltd. and distributed in the United States by Heritage Pharmaceuticals Inc. BiCNU is available as a vial of BiCNU and dehydrated alcohol co-packaged together. While the NDC on the outer package of the authentic and counterfeit ver ... Read more

Related support groups: Brain Tumor, Multiple Myeloma, Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Hodgkin's Lymphoma, Malignant Glioma, BiCNU

Could Canine Research Offer Clues to Human Brain Cancer?

Posted 12 May 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 12, 2016 – Dogs may help scientists unleash the secrets to a malignant brain tumor in humans. Research across 25 dog breeds has uncovered three genes thought to increase the risk of glioma brain tumors. The findings may offer clues about how these common and often untreatable tumors form in people, according to the study authors. Gliomas are the most common type of primary malignant brain tumors in people and the second most common in dogs, the researchers said. Certain breeds – such as Boxers, Bulldogs and Boston Terriers – have a higher risk for gliomas than others. This suggests a mix of genes may influence glioma risk, said study co-leader Katarina Truve, of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. Two of the genes identified by the researchers have additional links to cancer, Truve and her colleagues said in the report published May 12 in the journal PLOS ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Malignant Glioma, Head Imaging

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, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Brain Tumor, Melanoma, Xeloda, Skin Cancer, Tasigna, Pancreatic Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Sprycel, Hydroxyurea

Certain Cancers Seem Less Likely for Kids of Hispanic Moms Born Outside U.S.

Posted 25 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 25, 2016 – Children of Hispanic mothers who weren't born in the United States may be at lower risk for some types of childhood cancers, a new study suggests. "Incorporating the immigrant experience into studies of childhood cancer may help to inform research on disease [causes], identify vulnerable populations and highlight opportunities for cancer prevention," said Julia Heck, of the University of California, Los Angeles, and her study co-authors. It is important to evaluate childhood cancer risk in the large and growing Hispanic population, the research team said. For the study, the investigators analyzed data from children born in California between 1983 and 2012. The analysis was limited to children of U.S.-born white, U.S.-born Hispanic, or non-U.S.-born Hispanic mothers. Among the children, there were about 13,600 cancer diagnoses before age 6, and more than 15.5 ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, Malignant Glioma, Wilms' Tumor, Neuroblastoma, Anaplastic Astrocytoma

Chemo May Prolong Lives of Some Brain Cancer Patients: Study

Posted 6 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 6, 2016 – Adding chemotherapy to radiation treatment may add years to the lives of people with certain slow-growing brain tumors, a new study finds. The findings come from a long-term follow-up of patients who took part in a trial that began in 1998. All were treated for grade 2 gliomas – tumors that begin in brain cells called glial cells and are relatively slow-growing. Earlier results from the trial had shown that adding chemotherapy to the standard treatment of radiation – with or without surgery – can help keep tumors from progressing. Now there's proof that it prolongs people's lives, too. "Until now, there hasn't been any therapy known to improve life expectancy for these patients," said lead researcher Dr. Jan Buckner. He is the chair of oncology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. In the United States, nearly 23,000 adults were diagnosed with brain ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Malignant Glioma, History - Radiation Therapy

Brain Cancers Both Common and Deadly Among Teens, Young Adults: Report

Posted 24 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 24, 2016 – Brain cancers are the most common cause of cancer deaths among teens and young adults, but the types of cancers that strike can vary widely as people age, a new report shows. "For these individuals – who are finishing school, pursuing their careers and starting and raising young families – a brain tumor diagnosis is especially cruel and disruptive," said Elizabeth Wilson, president and CEO of the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA). "This report enables us for the first time to zero in on the types of tumors occurring at key [age] intervals over a 25-year time span, to help guide critical research investments and strategies for living with a brain tumor that reflect the patient's unique needs," Wilson said in an association news release. The ABTA-funded report, which used data from 51 separate cancer registries that represented 99.9 percent of the U.S. ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Malignant Glioma

Allergies, Asthma Tied to Lower Risk of Brain Cancer

Posted 5 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 5, 2016 – People with respiratory allergies, asthma and the skin condition eczema may be less likely to develop glioma brain cancer, a new study suggests. The international team of researchers looked at more than 4,500 glioma patients and almost 4,200 people without brain cancer. The investigators found that a history of respiratory allergies, asthma and eczema was associated with a reduced risk for glioma. People with respiratory allergies or eczema were 30 percent less likely to develop the deadly brain cancer than those without such conditions, the study found. Although the study found an association between allergic conditions and a lower risk of gliomas, it wasn't designed to prove a cause-and-effect relationship between those factors. The study was released online Feb. 5 in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. "Many other studies have shown this ... Read more

Related support groups: Allergic Reactions, Allergies, Asthma, Asthma - Maintenance, Eczema, Allergic Rhinitis, Hay Fever, Brain Tumor, Asthma - Acute, Anaphylaxis, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Head and Neck Cancer, Allergic Asthma, Malignant Glioma, Head Imaging

Signs of Brain Tumor May Show in Blood Years Before Diagnosis

Posted 18 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 18, 2015 – Brain tumors known as gliomas usually produce symptoms several months before they're diagnosed, but new research found changes in immune function may occur up to five years before these cancers are detected. "Now, clinicians don't have any way to detect the tumors until patients have symptoms, which is typically three months before diagnosis. I see something five years before," study author Judith Schwartzbaum, an associate professor of epidemiology at Ohio State University, in Columbus. Researchers analyzed blood samples collected over 40 years in Norway from people getting annual checkups or donating blood. Norway also has a cancer registry, enabling the researchers to identify blood samples of people who developed a brain tumor. The blood samples were collected an average of 15 years before tumors were detected. Specifically, the researchers compared ... Read more

Related support groups: Allergic Reactions, Allergies, Brain Tumor, Diagnosis and Investigation, Malignant Glioma

Removing All Visible Cancer Is Key to Treating Aggressive Brain Tumors

Posted 14 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 14, 2015 – Surgery that removes all visible cancer significantly improves the chances of survival for children with aggressive brain tumors, especially girls. That's the finding of a study that included almost 100 children treated for high-grade glioma brain cancer between 1988 and 2010. These rare brain tumors occur in fewer than one in 100,000 children and teens. After two years, the overall survival rate was 45 percent; 25 percent had no cancer progression. Surgery to remove all visible signs of cancer was successful in one-third of the children. Their median survival was 3.4 years, compared with 1.6 years for those who did not have all visible cancer removed. Median means half of the children lived longer, half did not. The survival benefit after successful surgery was much greater in girls, with median survival of 8.1 years. Boys had a median survival of 2.4 years. ... Read more

Related support groups: Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Neurosurgery, Malignant Glioma

Treatments for Brain Cancer Take Heavy Toll on the Brain

Posted 3 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 3, 2015 – Radiation and chemotherapy can cause structural changes in the healthy brain tissue of patients with glioblastoma brain tumors, a new study finds. The research included 14 glioblastoma patients who underwent 35 weeks of combined radiation and chemotherapy (chemoradiation) after having their tumors surgically removed. The patients had brain scans before and after chemoradiation, but an adequate number of images were obtained from only eight of the patients. Those images revealed a significant decrease in whole brain volume – the overall amount of brain tissue – throughout chemoradiation. The reduced amount of brain tissue became apparent within a few weeks after the start of chemoradiation and was primarily seen in gray matter. The scans also showed that the size of the brain's ventricles – cerebrospinal fluid-filled spaces deep within the brain – grew ... Read more

Related support groups: Brain Tumor, Glioblastoma Multiforme, Malignant Glioma

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, Femara, Fluorouracil, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Rituxan, Isotretinoin

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