A Transformative Moment for Cancer Research
by Douglas R. Lowy, MD, acting director of the National Cancer Institute
Although he was writing specifically about financial advice, Franklin’s words could no doubt apply to decades of scientific investment that is opening up numerous, exciting opportunities for progress against cancer. From the rapid emergence of immune-based therapies to the continued advances in cancer genomics that are forever altering how we think about and approach prevention, diagnosis, and treatment – this is truly a transformative moment for cancer research.
Treating Cancer in Older Adults
by Hyman B. Muss, MD
“I didn’t know older people got cancer.” I hear this frequently from newly diagnosed older adults, who are often surprised to find out that the risk of getting cancer rises dramatically with age. But the fact of the matter is that, thanks to improvements in healthcare, people are living longer, resulting in an increasingly larger population of older Americans and, subsequently, an ever-growing number of older adult cancer survivors.
Questions and Answers about Lymphedema
by Stanley G. Rockson, MD, FACP, FACC
Lymphedema is the accumulation of a protein-rich body fluid called lymph, typically in one part of the body, when the lymphatic system for fluid transport is damaged. For example, if lymph nodes are removed from the armpit region during breast cancer treatment, lymphedema can occur in that arm.
When Cancer Pain and Chronic Pain Coexist
by Pamela J. Haylock, PhD, RN, FAN, and Carol P. Curtiss, MSN, RN-BC
If you find yourself in a situation where you are dealing with cancer pain in addition to chronic pain, here are some things you should know.
Confronting Cancer as a Senior Adult
by Amy MacKenzie, MD, and Andrew E. Chapman, DO, FACP
Making treatment decisions can be challenging. Meeting with multiple specialists to discuss everything from chemotherapy to survivorship plans is an overwhelming part of the cancer experience for anyone diagnosed with cancer. However, if you’re a senior adult, you also have a unique set of challenges to consider as you work with your healthcare team to plan your treatment.
A Clinical Trial System for the Era of Precision Cancer Medicine
by Jeffrey Abrams, MD
The National Cancer Institute has the largest oncology clinical trials program in the world, supporting, fully or in part, 3,775 active clinical trials and enrolling more than 35,000 clinical trial participants annually. Yet, as a director of NCI-supported clinical trials, I know that behind every statistic is a person, each of whom brings his or her own motivations and hopes to the table when deciding whether to participate in a clinical trial.
Should You Consider Genetic Counseling and Testing?
by Ellen T. Matloff, MS, CGC, and Karina L. Brierley, MS, CGC
Genetic counseling and testing have become integral tools in the fight against cancer. The results can provide important information to help guide appropriate surgical decisions, treatment, surveillance, and prevention strategies for an individual and his or her entire family. Awareness and availability of cancer genetic counseling and testing, criteria for insurance coverage of testing, and available testing options have expanded rapidly in the past decade. Therefore, even cancer survivors who did not previously have the chance to undergo genetic counseling and testing, or who tested negative in the past, may now be candidates for these services.
Hope for the Future
by Laxmi A. Kondapalli, MD, MSCE
With cancer survival rates steadily increasing, what was once considered a “terminal illness” now allows people to imagine a life after cancer with expectations beyond survival. However, some of the new life-saving treatments contributing to increased survival can negatively affect fertility, causing delays in childbearing or even compromising a person’s ability to have children in the future. Fortunately, over the last several decades, the emergence of the medical discipline of oncofertility and the development of new fertility preservation techniques have made the dream of building a biological family a reality for many cancer survivors.