The connection between a researcher’s biography and area of study is not always obvious. A young scientist may discover an intellectual fascination with immunology, for example, despite not having known anyone with an immunological disorder. For Dana-Farber’s Narjust Duma, MD, however, research is not just a response to her life experiences. It’s a way to … Read more
In December 2013, Michelle Leonard wasn’t too concerned when she felt a pain in her right chest. “I kind of thought, ‘Well at least it’s the right side, not a big deal,’” she says. But then she developed a fever and decided to go to her primary care physician. Her nurse practitioner sent her for … Read more
Quitting smoking during cancer treatment may seem overwhelming, but this is an especially important time to try. Active cancer patients and survivors who cut down on their cigarettes, vaping, or other nicotine use can experience a reduction in heart, stomach, and infection problems related to chemotherapy toxicity, improve their healing and breathing post-surgery, and decrease … Read more
Lung cancer is second only to breast cancer for the most common type of cancer seen in women (not counting skin cancer), the American Cancer Society reports. Here are the important facts about this type of cancer that every person should know. What is lung cancer and how are women affected? Lung cancer most commonly … Read more
A form of immune cell therapy for cancer known as tumor infiltrating lymphocyte, or TIL, therapy, involves removing immune T cells from a piece of the patient’s tumor — where the T cells have succeeded in recognizing the cancer — expanding them outside the body, and re-infusing them by the billions to fight the disease. … Read more
While most lung cancers are linked to tobacco smoking, a minority — about 15 percent in the United States — of non-small cell lung cancers are driven by a random mutation in a gene called EGFR, which helps cells grow and divide. What is EGFR-mutant lung cancer? A mutation in the gene EGFR, which stands … Read more
When looking for inspiration, Saila Hanninen needs only to glance at her left wrist. Tattooed there is the Finnish word “jaksaa” (pronounced YÄK SAH), roughly translating to “strength.” Jaksaa, however, is about more than just physical strength: It’s about fortitude, endurance, mental toughness, and a willingness to keep going when the odds are against you. … Read more
It was an otherwise normal Saturday night for Amy Neary: She was on her way to a hockey game with her husband, their three kids, and a friend. Neary had had a minor headache earlier in the day, but a few Advil cleared that right up. Then, all of a sudden as they were driving, … Read more
Husband and wife Ken Deutsch and Amy Green like to say they’re now “chasing the tail” of the bell curve. They have each had to grapple with cancer, as well as multiple setbacks and even recurrences. However, thanks to the care they’ve received at Dana-Farber — along with the support they’ve had from each other … Read more
Self-care — the practice of allotting time to take care of yourself and keep up with your own needs — is an important way of keeping the mind and body healthy. It is important for patients with lung cancer to practice self-care, especially during COVID-19. Here, Susanne Welsh Lobacki, LICSW, a clinical social worker at … Read more
As a federal probation officer, Ryan Fox brings empathy to her role working with prisoners and their families. Knowing there is often more to a case than meets the eye, she partners with lawyers, judges, and others in the court system to give inmates a fresh start and an opportunity to tell their stories. She’s … Read more
Medically reviewed by Michael Cheng, MD A report from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), found that in 2010, air pollution was responsible for 223,000 deaths from lung cancer worldwide. The findings were so striking that they prompted the agency, a part of the World Health Organization (WHO), to classify outdoor air pollution … Read more
Perhaps the biggest challenge in precision cancer therapy is tumors’ nasty habit of rebounding after an initial attack with targeted drugs has shrunk them almost out of existence. Instead of vanishing completely, curing the patient, the tumors leave behind a small cadre of cells that slumber in a dormant state, only to return in a … Read more
Medically reviewed by Geoffrey Shapiro, MD, PhD, and Christopher French, MD Although it is one of the most aggressive solid tumors in humans, NUT carcinoma responds better to treatment in some patients than others. But because it is rare — with only 20 to 30 cases diagnosed annually in the United States — doctors have … Read more
Barry Nelson describes his family’s cancer history as “prolific.” Nelson’s grandmother, mother, and two aunts all died from cancer, and it seemed like Nelson might be next. “One morning, I woke up and I had a pain in my neck on my left side. I went to my primary care physician and, ultimately, I found out … Read more
Medically reviewed by Pasi A Jänne, MD, PhD Imagine inserting a key to shut off an engine only to find that it no longer fits — that the configuration of the lock has been changed without notice. Scientists developing targeted therapies to treat cancer often face a similar conundrum. Targeted therapies derive their effectiveness from … Read more
Women who are at high risk for lung cancer based on smoking history are less likely than men to have discussions with their doctors about potentially life-saving early detection screening, a new study has found. In a 2017 survey, women were 32% less likely to report having a lung cancer screening discussion with a provider … Read more
Here’s what you should know about what to look out for.
A cough can potentially be a symptom of a health concern, but in the overwhelming majority of cases that include a cough, the cause is unrelated to cancer.
Nancy Hale was given a 30 percent chance of surviving three years when she was diagnosed with lung cancer. But today, six years after her initial diagnosis and because of an immunotherapy clinical trial, Hale is in remission—and “blazing the trail” for other patients.