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Cancer Takes Financial Toll, Even With Insurance

Posted 10 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 10, 2017 – Many cancer patients in the United States are shocked by their out-of-pocket costs for care – with some spending one-third of their income on treatment, a new study finds. The study looked at the financial toll of cancer treatment on people who have health insurance. The vast majority in the study had private insurance or Medicare coverage; the rest were on Medicaid, the government insurance program for poor Americans. Despite that, the study found, patients typically spent nearly $600 a month on their treatment. Overall, 16 percent said they were facing "high or overwhelming financial distress." Those patients were spending nearly one-third of their monthly income on cancer care. Dr. Yousuf Zafar, the senior researcher on the study, used the term "financial toxicity." "Oncologists talk about the toxicities of cancer treatment. But there can also be a ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Skin Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Stomach Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Testicular Cancer, Gastric Cancer, Choriocarcinoma

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, Prostate Cancer, Medroxyprogesterone, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Femara, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Brain Tumor, Anastrozole, Letrozole, Tarceva, Megestrol

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, Prostate Cancer, Medroxyprogesterone, Tamoxifen, Arimidex, Fluorouracil, Femara, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Votrient, Brain Tumor, Anastrozole, Letrozole

Give Dad the Gift of Health on Father's Day

Posted 16 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 16, 2017 – The best present you can give your dad this Father's Day is to help him get healthy, according to a doctor specializing in men's health. "We tend to think men don't want to talk about their own health, but I find that's really not the case with most. Dads are much more open than you'd think to talk about their health," said Dr. Jesse Mills. He is director of The Men's Clinic at the University of California, Los Angeles. One way that children, no matter their age, can help dad is to become his workout buddy or at least be part of his exercise routine. "Even when dad is taking care of the kids, the kids don't have to be a roadblock for his exercise. Dads of toddlers can run while pushing the stroller, and stop at the playground with his kids mid-workout," Mills said in a university news release. Sleep is another important health habit for fathers. Men should get ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, High Cholesterol, Prostate Cancer, Testicular Cancer

FDA Warns 14 Companies on Bogus Cancer 'Cures'

Posted 25 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 25, 2017 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday posted warning letters to 14 companies that are selling more than 65 fake cancer treatments. The bogus products include pills, capsules, powders, creams, teas, oils and treatment and diagnostic kits. They're most commonly marketed and sold without FDA approval on websites and social media platforms, the FDA announcement of its action said. The treatments are frequently advertised as "natural" and often falsely labeled as dietary supplements, the agency added. "Consumers should not use these or similar unproven products because they may be unsafe and could prevent a person from seeking an appropriate and potentially lifesaving cancer diagnosis or treatment," said Douglas Stearn. He is director of the Office of Enforcement and Import Operations in the FDA's Office of Regulatory Affairs. "We encourage people to ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Melatonin, Fish Oil, Lovaza, Glucosamine, Colorectal Cancer, 5-HTP, Turmeric, Garlic, Cranberry, Chondroitin, Creatine, Green Tea, Valerian, St. John's Wort, Lysine, Tryptophan, Evening Primrose, CoQ10

Survival Continues to Improve for Most Cancers

Posted 31 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 31, 2017 – Overall cancer death rates in the United States continue to fall, but racial gaps persist, a new report says. Death rates fell between 2010 and 2014 for 11 of the 16 most common cancers in men and for 13 of the most common types in women, including lung, colon, prostate and breast cancers. However, death rates rose for cancers of the liver, pancreas and brain in men and for the liver and uterus in women. And improvements in cancer survival weren't equal for all Americans. "While this report found that five-year survival for most types of cancer improved among both blacks and whites over the past several decades, racial disparities for many common cancers have persisted, and they may have increased for prostate cancer and female breast cancer," said Dr. Lynne Penberthy. She's associate director of the U.S. National Cancer Institute's Surveillance Research ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Brain Tumor, Breast Cancer, Metastatic, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Endometrial Cancer, Osteosarcoma, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Melanoma - Metastatic

Many Younger Cancer Survivors Can't Afford Their Meds

Posted 21 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 21, 2017 – The skyrocketing cost of prescription drugs has many U.S. cancer survivors skipping needed medications or seeking cheaper alternatives, putting their health at risk, a new study finds. Younger, privately insured patients are particularly likely to cut corners when it comes to medications, a team of U.S. researchers found. The study looked at medical records of thousands of adult cancer survivors and others without a cancer history. Among adults under 65 years of age, nearly 32 percent who were recently diagnosed with cancer and 28 percent who were diagnosed two or more years earlier said they had to change medications because they couldn't afford the first one prescribed, the investigators found. For patients without cancer, only around 21 percent said they had to switch to cheaper drugs, the findings showed. "This is more common among those with ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Stomach Cancer, Testicular Cancer

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

Toxins in Your Fast-Food Packaging?

Posted 1 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1, 2017 – Many grease-resistant fast-food wrappers and boxes contain potentially harmful chemicals that can leach into food, a new study contends. Testing on more than 400 samples from restaurants nationwide revealed that nearly half of fast-food wrappers and one out of five paperboard food boxes contained detectable levels of fluorine, said lead researcher Laurel Schaider. She's an environmental chemist at the Silent Spring Institute in Newton, Mass. Previous studies have linked some fluorinated chemicals such as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) to kidney and testicular cancer, low birth weight, thyroid disease, decreased sperm quality, pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, and immune system problems in children, the study authors said in background notes. Major U.S. manufacturers voluntarily phased out PFOA and PFOS for most uses ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, Thyroid Disease, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Immunosuppression, Poisoning, Premature Labor, Testicular Cancer, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Labor Pain, Hypertensive Heart Disease, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy

Worldwide Cancer Rates Up More Than One-Third in Past Decade: Report

Posted 4 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

SATURDAY, Dec. 3, 2016 – Cancer cases rose 33 percent worldwide in the past 10 years, a new study shows. In 2015, there were 17.5 million diagnoses and 8.7 million deaths in the world from the disease, the researchers found. The rise in cancer cases was mainly due to population aging and growth, along with changes in age-specific cancer rates, according to the Global Burden of Disease Cancer Collaboration study. The lifetime risk of developing cancer was one in three for men and one in four for women, the researchers said. Prostate cancer was the most common type of cancer in men (1.6 million cases), and tracheal, bronchus and lung cancer was the leading cause of cancer death in men. Breast cancer was the most common cancer for women (2.4 million cases), and the leading cause of cancer death in women. The most common cancers in children were leukemia, other neoplasms, non-Hodgkin ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Lymphoma, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Testicular Cancer, Salivary Gland Cancer, Solid Tumors

Cancer Patients, Doctors Often Disagree About Prognosis

Posted 15 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 15, 2016 – Cancer patients and their doctors often hold different opinions about the patient's chances for survival and how long he or she might live, according to a new study. And, in many cases, patients are unaware there's any misunderstanding. "First, some patients might know the doctor's prognosis estimate but the patient chooses to disagree, often because they believe other sources. And second, some patients think that their doctor agrees with their opinion about prognosis but, in fact, the doctor doesn't," said study co-author Dr. Ronald Epstein. He is a professor of family medicine, psychiatry and oncology at the University of Rochester Medical Center in New York. For the study, researchers asked 236 patients with advanced cancer about their prognosis. The 38 doctors who treated them independently said they would "not have been surprised" if their patients died ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Brain Tumor, Melanoma, Ovarian Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Stomach Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Testicular Cancer, Solid Tumors

Many Men Ignore Testicular Cancer Symptoms for Months

Posted 5 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 5, 2016 – Early detection and treatment of testicular cancer is key to beating the disease, a urology specialist says. Yet many men who feel something abnormal in a testicle wait a few months before seeing a doctor. But, when diagnosed while still confined to the testicle, the five-year survival rate for testicular cancer is 99 percent, Dr. Jay Raman, chief of urology at Penn State Medical Center said in a university news release. "I think part of it is the macho man complex – that everything is fine. Then you add on top of that the fact that it is a sensitive area, and they may have some embarrassment about it," Raman said. Men who know about testicular cancer may also be concerned that surgical removal of the testicle is the best way to cure the disease. "So they wait to see if it gets better on its own. But sometimes they wait and wait, until they've waited too long," ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Testicular Cancer

A Little Guidance Is Key to Getting That Cancer Screen

Posted 22 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 22, 2016 – The use of patient navigators – people who help patients receive health care services – improved cancer screening rates among low-income and ethnic minority patients, a new study reports. "These findings demonstrate how effective patient navigators can be for patients who, for a variety of reasons, encounter obstacles to receiving cancer screening," said study author Dr. Sanja Percac-Lima. She is physician leader for cancer outreach at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Center for Community Health Improvement. "Health disparities pose a major challenge to low-income and ethnic minority patients, and our study suggests a proactive approach may help increase their chances of receiving the care they need," Percac-Lima explained in a hospital news release. The research included more than 1,600 patients at 18 MGH primary care practices. The patients were ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Colonoscopy, Prostate Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Basal Cell Carcinoma, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Testicular Cancer, History - Skin Cancer

Global Recession May Have Contributed to Cancer Deaths

Posted 26 May 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 26, 2016 – The 2008 global economic crisis has been linked to a sharp rise in deaths from cancer, a new study reports. Unemployment and cuts in public health-care spending were associated with more than 260,000 additional cancer deaths by 2010. Most of those deaths – 160,000 – were in the European Union, the researchers said. The study included 70 countries and a total of more than 2 billion people, according to the report published online May 25 in The Lancet. "Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide, so understanding how economic changes affect cancer survival is crucial," lead author Dr. Mahiben Maruthappu, of Imperial College London, said in a journal news release. "We found that increased unemployment was associated with increased cancer mortality, but that universal health coverage protected against these effects. This was especially the case for treatable ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Brain Tumor, Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Endometrial Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Stomach Cancer, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Testicular Cancer, Gastric Cancer, Peritoneal Cancer

Too Many Advanced Cancer Patients Lack Info About Their Disease

Posted 23 May 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, May 23, 2016 – Many patients battling advanced cancer lack basic information about their prognosis or treatment, meaning they can't make informed decisions about their care, a small new study suggests. "These were people with highly lethal metastatic cancers that had progressed after at least one prior line of chemotherapy; their life expectancy was approximately four months from our interview," said lead researcher Dr. Holly Prigerson. She is a professor of geriatrics at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City. "We were astonished to learn that only 5 percent of this sample had sufficient knowledge about their illness to make informed decisions about their care," Prigerson said in a Weill Cornell news release. The findings highlight the need for doctors to improve communication with these patients, she said. In the study, Prigerson's team compared 178 advanced cancer patients' ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Brain Tumor, Skin Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Endometrial Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Stomach Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, Breast Cancer - Palliative, Testicular Cancer, Gastric Cancer, Solid Tumors

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