Insomnia and Sleep: What You Need to Know [Podcast]

According the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a third of the U.S. adults report that they usually get less than the recommended amount of sleep. Sleep deprivation is linked to many chronic diseases and conditions, including obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and depression. For many cancer patients and survivors, insomnia, a sleep disorder … Continued

How are bispecific antibodies being used to treat blood cancers?

Many of the immunotherapy drugs that are transforming the treatment of certain types of cancer are based on antibodies — artificial proteins that latch onto a molecular target, called an antigen. Bispecific antibodies, which can bind to two antigens at the same time, are being tested and moving toward clinical use in some blood cancers. … Continued

With precision cancer medicine, a success against endometrial cancer

In the annals of patients who have benefited from Dana-Farber and Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s (BWH) genomic sequencing program Profile, few involve a turnabout as dramatic as one recently reported in Gynecologic Oncology. Authored by nearly a dozen Dana-Farber and BWH faculty, the paper recounts the medical history of a 49-year-old Nebraska woman first diagnosed … Continued

Questions for your oncologist when you’re diagnosed with breast cancer

Learning that you have breast cancer can be overwhelming. In the shock of a diagnosis, it may be hard to organize your thoughts or plan out your questions. But those questions are important, and there are likely to be many of them. The answers will have an impact on your treatment and the preparations you … Continued

New study uncovers strategy for defusing castration-resistant prostate cancer

Cancer is often fueled by hormones, including the male sex hormone testosterone, which spur tumor growth in most forms of prostate cancer. Doctors can defuse this destructive relationship, typically with drugs (or sometimes surgery), but frequently, the tumors adapt or evolve, devising ways to incite cancer growth even in the absence of hormone-driven signals. These … Continued

What to Consider When You’re Picking a Pediatric Cancer Surgeon

As a parent or caregiver, it’s only natural for you to want the best for your child. But when it comes to a cancer diagnosis, specifically one that requires surgery as part of treatment, how do you know what the “best” is?  Here are five things to consider when you’re selecting a pediatric surgeon. Expertise … Continued

How Do I Know if I am Eligible For a Clinical Trial?

Clinical trials are research studies that examine whether new therapies, diagnostic techniques, or disease-prevention strategies are safe and effective in people. They’re considered the gold standard for determining if newly developed treatments produce better results and fewer side effects than standard therapies. All proposals for clinical trials go through a rigorous review at the institution … Continued

Longtime Ovarian Cancer Survivor Sings a Song of Hope

It was a bumpy road for Anne Sandstrom at first: after dealing with a stage IIIc ovarian cancer diagnosis, she had two relapses in a three-year span. But finally, treatment worked, and Sandstrom has enjoyed 16 years in which her disease lay dormant — enough for her oncologist to declare her “graduated” in 2017. The … Continued

How Does Bladder Cancer Affect the Urinary System?

Urinary problems are more common among older adults, when incontinence and urinary-tract infections become more prevalent and bladder cancer risk rises. About 9 out of 10 bladder cancer patients are above the age of 55, according to the American Cancer Society. The symptoms of bladder cancer can mirror those of other conditions, so it’s important … Continued

Tips for Coping with a Cancer Recurrence

In some cases, despite a cancer care team’s best effort, cancer comes back after treatment. This is known as a relapse or recurrence. The news can have a similar emotional impact to a patient’s initial diagnosis; patients may experience shock or feel overwhelmed. Everyone’s experience is different, and the most important thing you can do … Continued

What is Clonal Cytopenia of Undetermined Significance (CCUS)?

CCUS is a condition in which a person has a low blood count—a low level of certain kinds of blood cells—without an apparent cause, and a portion of the blood cells carry an acquired genetic mutation. The condition, which is usually diagnosed after a routine blood test followed by specialized molecular testing, can place individuals … Continued

Study Uncovers Dual Gene-Control System in Multiple Myeloma

The process of converting genetic information from DNA to RNA, known as transcription, is a joint undertaking. Sections of DNA, known as promoters, collaborate with other sections known as enhancers to recast the genetic code into a form that can be used by cells to make proteins. As with many partnerships, however, it hasn’t been … Continued

What is Carcinoma of the Prostate?

Carcinoma of the prostate is a type of prostate cancer that occurs when normal prostate cells begin to grow uncontrollably. Carcinomas begin in the epithelial tissue—the thin tissue, like skin, that covers the linings of internal organs. Other cancers typically form in the body’s connective or supportive tissues (sarcomas), blood-forming tissue like bone marrow (leukemia), … Continued

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Pediatric Leukemia?

Leukemia is a type of cancer of the blood that develops in the bone marrow. The disease is the most common type of childhood cancer, and it typically presents in children between the ages of two and six. Still, the disease is rare in children; leukemia is most commonly seen in adults.    Subtypes of … Continued

What Are the Common Treatments for Cancer?

Every cancer patient is different, and there are many different types of cancer treatment that a patient may receive—all of which is dependent on their unique circumstances. A patient may only receive one type of treatment or a combination of multiple different treatments. Treatment can also have different goals. In some cases, treatment is used … Continued

Athlete Getting Back on the Field After Low-Grade Glioma

This post was originally published on Thriving, Boston Children’s Hospital’s pediatric health blog. It started with muscle aches in her shoulders, almost like spasms, while she slept. The pain was awful, and nothing seemed to bring relief. But because Erin Holmberg is a varsity three-sport athlete—soccer, basketball and track—everyone assumed it was muscular pain caused … Continued

What to Expect in Your First Meeting with Your Oncologist

A cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming, especially when you prepare for treatment with your care team. However, knowing what to prepare for can help make the process a little easier. Here’s what you can generally expect in your first meeting with your oncologist, and care team, after your diagnosis. Information collecting Before you meet with … Continued