National Cancer Survivors Day

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Infections Are Serious Threats for People with Cancer

by Linda Graviss, MT, CIC, and Roy Chemaly, MD, MPH, FIDSA, FACP

Did you know that your body’s number-one defense against infections is often compromised when you have cancer? Both chemo­therapy and radiation therapy can weaken your immune system, lessening its abil­ity to put up a good fight against the germs that cause infections. Moreover, surgery and other medical procedures break or damage the skin – your body’s primary infection defense – increasing your risk for developing infection.

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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.

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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.

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Fertility and Cancer

by Lisa Kolp, MD

When you hear the news that you have cancer, you may feel as if your life is spinning out of your con­trol. You wonder whether you will survive. And what about all the side effects of cancer treat­ment? Will you be able to manage them? Then your doctor drops another bomb, sending your sense of control hurtling even further from your reach: the treatments intended to save your life may leave you infertile.

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Put an End To Cancer Pain

by Julie Knight, PharmD, Charlene Whittlesey, PharmD, BCPS, and Sorin Buga, MD, FACP

Pain, as defined by the International Association for the Study of Pain, is “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue injury or de­scribed in terms of such damage.” In other words, pain is whatever you per­ceive it to be. We all feel pain differently; therefore, the pain experience is unique to each person.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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