How an HMOs financial incentives to limit testing sunk a physician during a malpractice trial
Moral of the story - protect yourself and rule out the worst disease possible (i.e. the one that will get you in trouble if you miss it). The patient in this case saw the physician six times before the cancer was found. After the third or fourth visit of persistent symptoms, an ...

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A new retrospective review of 700 women aged 65 or older shows that taking adjuvant chemotherapy for lymph-node positive breast cancer is associated with a reduction in recurrence of and death from breast cancer.

Although the older women had a higher treatment-related mortality (33 deaths), the authors suggest that "older breast cancer patients ... ask their physicians about the opportunities to receive chemotherapy that might be helpful to ...

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As a reminder to all, this link from the American Cancer Society reviews the guidelines on screening and surveillance for the early detection of polyps and colorectal cancer.

There are three risk catagories: average, increased, and high. Check out the table at the bottom of the link to see what risk category you fall in.

50,000 people die from colon cancer each year - one every 9.3 ...

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When patients deny illness

Much denial-blogging today. Alisha's mother-in-law won't accept physical limitations imposed by her cancer. Orac tries to help a patient who rejects her malignant biopsy results. What is denial, and how should we approach it? (Pause for a quick check - has the Cheerful Oncologist posted about this yet? No? I'd love to know what he thinks!) Here's Dr. Simon Wein, MD, of Memorial Sloan-Kettering ...

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The role of targeted therapy in non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is being explored, tested, reported and argued about almost continuously in the medical oncology literature. Rituximab, a highly specific monoclonal antibody that binds to an antigen called CD20 on B-lymphocytes, is commercially available and has been studied extensively. It is quite active against both indolent and aggressive NHL.

Whether rituximab prolongs survival in this disease is still to be determined. ...

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Blog Plugging

My alter-ego, The Cheerful Oncologist, has written a little post on the first and most important responsibility of the cancer specialist. To find out what this is, point your mouse here.

After you read it, feel free to commit floccinaucinihilipilification.

Treating non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) after it becomes resistant to chemotherapy has been the subject of intense scientific and clinical research. The study of targeted therapy, in which a drug or biological agent attaches only to a specific receptor on a malignant cell, led to the approval and release of the anilinoquinazolines gefitinib (Iressa) and erlotinib (Tarceva), for the treatment of patients with NSCLC who have failed or can ...

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Gift certificates for breast cancer screening
"REACH for Breast Health is offering a $10 gift certificate to a local supermarket to every woman who completes breast screening who has never had a mammogram, or who has not had one in over two years."

It's come down to this - paying people to maintain their health.

A man had to wait more than five hours for a doctor to come to his home to certify his wife's death from cancer
"It would have been nice to have her for about an hour just to say goodbye but five-and-a-half hours, well, the body starts to go cold and that's not what anybody wants to remember, especially not my 10-year-old little sister who was with us. It's ...

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A leading breast cancer surgeon who was diagnosed with breast cancer gets ready to return to work
Initial clinical breast exam by her colleagues as well as a mammogram were negative. At her persistance, surgeons found three separate cancers in her breast.

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