Archive for December 31, 2013

Lung Cancer Screenings for High-Risk Patients a ‘Move Forward’

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Experts with the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) have recommended that current smokers and former-smokers who recently quit should undergo an annual low-dose CT scan to screen for lung cancer.

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When It Comes To Fighting Leukemia, This Patient Says, “Sharpen your Sword”

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By Buck Rogers

When I woke up from a 40-minute operation to remove a lymph node from my neck, my Ear, Nose & Throat surgeon approached me with another doctor and said, “I’d like you to meet your oncologist.” My life instantly changed; I was diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

After about six weeks of being scared, wondering how much time was left, trying to figure out what to tell our kids and our parents, my wife and I decided that the only choice was to fight as hard as we could. I started by running up and down Village Street in Medway, Mass., barely getting a mile before feeling winded. But the thought of doing nothing was even more frightening, so I kept running.

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Top 10 Insight Stories from 2013

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As 2013 comes to a close, we’re looking back at some of our favorite Insight posts from the last year. From inspiring patient stories to important research, here is our top 10 list:

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Cancer Immunotherapy Named ‘Breakthrough of the Year’

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By Robert Levy

Treatments that unleash the body’s own disease-fighting cells against cancer – an approach known as immunotherapy – have been heralded as the “Breakthrough of the Year” by Science magazine.

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A History of Holiday Celebrations

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While the winter holidays are a festive time of year, they can also be very challenging for individuals and families undergoing cancer treatment. Dana-Farber has always tried to make the season a little brighter for its patients and staff.

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Six Healthy Holiday Foods and Recipes

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The holidays are here and so are holiday parties, potlucks, and sweet treats. But the season doesn’t always have to be about rich, high-calorie food.

“Many holiday foods can be nutritious as well as delicious,” says Stacy Kennedy, MPH, RD, a nutritionist with Dana-Farber.

Whether you’re filling your plate or planning a holiday gathering, it’s important to aim for variety, including fresh fruit and vegetables and healthy proteins. Kennedy also recommends drinking lots of water and getting plenty of exercise.

Here are six healthy party foods and recipes you can try this holiday season:

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Dancing for Hope, Friendship and a Cure

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By Shannon Watterson

If you asked a young Susan Mendoza Friedman where she saw her life going, she would not have said fundraising for cancer research and patient care. But, when the dance studio owner and early childhood expert’s best friend of 40 years, Karen Schek, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in November 2005, that’s exactly what happened.

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New Study: Nuts Linked to Reduced Risk of Pancreatic and Other Cancers

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An analysis of data from the decades-long Nurses’ Health Study revealed that women who ate a one-ounce serving of nuts – any kind of nuts – two or more times a week had a 35 percent lower risk of pancreatic cancer than women who abstained from them. That’s a significant and encouraging piece of news for a field that has had far too little.

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New Research Shows Progress in Breast Cancer Treatment

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The 36th annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, which ran from Dec. 10-14, brought news of significant advances against a disease that strikes more than 230,000 women and 2,000 men in the United States each year.

The more than 1,000 research papers presented by thousands of scientists and physicians ranged from laboratory explorations of the basic biology of the disease to studies that may change the treatment for patients with a variety of breast cancer subtypes.

Here are summaries of the findings of several high-profile studies:

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Seven Tips for Staying Healthy During the Holidays

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As the holiday season fills with family gatherings, travel and potluck parties, it is important to be extra attentive to avoiding germs.

In addition to getting a flu shot, there are a number of other ways to prevent illness. Candace Hsieh, RN, CIC, of Dana-Farber’s Center for Patient Safety, offers some tips for staying healthy and reducing the chance for infection:

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