May 10, 2015 |
Personalized cancer therapy is no longer just an exciting prospect, and better survival rates - as well as escalating spending - are proving it. "It's here. It's definitely here," said Pasi Jänne, an oncologist at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. "Today, it's the most effective way to treat patients: figure out the genetic fingerprint of an individual's cancer and tailor the therapies to it. " This year, President Obama announced an initiative focused on "precision medicine.
April 23, 2015 |
Patients with late-stage lung cancer face a grim prognosis. So do those with mesothelioma, a rare, incurable type of lung cancer usually caused by exposure to asbestos. Merck & Co.'s hot new immunotherapy drug Keytruda could be a potent new weapon against these fearsome diseases, according to three studies presented in recent days at the American Association for Cancer Research conference in Philadelphia. Equally exciting, Keytruda is just one in a growing class of drugs that remove an immune system brake that cancer exploits to evade attack.
April 22, 2015 |
B RITTANY DANIEL , one of the blond-bombshell identical twins from the TV drama "Sweet Valley High," shared her story of surviving Stage 4 cancer at the American Association for Cancer Research's annual meeting last night in Center City. She had kept it under wraps for awhile, but Daniel was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2011. Last year, she decided it was time to break her silence. "I felt like this was important to fully heal," Daniel told me. Hosted by the media-driven nonprofit Stand Up to Cancer (SU2C)
April 20, 2015 |
In 1962, President John F. Kennedy committed the nation to landing a man on the moon by decade's end. In July 1969, it was mission accomplished. A half-century later, invoking Kennedy's challenge, scientists at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center announced they, too, were shooting for the moon. They launched the Cancer Moonshots Program, with the aim of reducing cancer deaths within five to 10 years. "It's a very goal-oriented effort that seems to impact one thing - and that is cancer mortality," Dr. Ronald DePinho, president of MD Anderson, said Saturday at the annual meeting convened by the Philadelphia-based American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)
April 15, 2015 |
John Harvey Taylor Jr. was the type of person who would volunteer for an experimental therapy for lung cancer because the results could potentially help others. A lifelong journalist, community leader, and education advocate, Mr. Taylor, 71, of Wilmington, died Saturday, April 4, at his home after a three-year battle with lung cancer. He worked at the Wilmington News Journal from 1966 to 2005, with only a two-year break, serving as an obituary writer, education reporter, and metropolitan editor.
March 3, 2015 |
Spit is central to Stephen Swanick's vision for detecting disease. His product, SaliMark OSCC, which debuted this month, uses genetic material in saliva to judge the risk of whether an oral lesion is cancerous. Swanick, 51, left his job in the medical-device industry and spent $1.3 million of his own money to pursue this. He founded PeriRx in Broomall in 2008, hoping spit would help spot a spectrum of illnesses, from lung cancer to diabetes. Instead, it has been a long slog, much like spitting in the wind.
January 30, 2015 |
The Pennsylvania Medical Society, which represents thousands of the state's doctors, says it will be entering the legal battle over $1 million in sanctions imposed by a Philadelphia judge on a lawyer who represents physicians in medical malpractice cases. Society president-elect Scott Shapiro, an Abington cardiologist, said he expects his organization to file legal papers in support of Berwyn lawyer Nancy Raynor to overturn the sanctions. "Multiple physicians have reached out to me, and they have all indicated in a variety of ways that this will impact physicians' ability to have the full benefit of a complete and thorough defense if they are named in a malpractice case," Shapiro said.
January 11, 2015 |
Radiation is a powerful cancer treatment, but protecting healthy tissue from the scatter of damaging rays is challenging. As a result, women who get radiation for cancer in their left breast - which overlaps the heart - have been found to be at increased risk of heart disease and lung cancer. A new study by Thomas Jefferson University researchers confirms that such women can significantly reduce the incidental radiation dose to their hearts with a simple technique: holding their breath.
November 15, 2014
THE SEAMLESS vision of life, as the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin once noted, is the only way to ensure individual dignity. We are only as strong as the weakest links in our human chain, so the way we treat the young, the sick and the elderly is the truest bellwether of our evolution as a compassionate society. Lately, though, that compassion has been lacking and I suspect it's due in no small part to our cavalier attitude toward unborn life. If you are capable of dehumanizing something at its most elemental level and packaging it as a wholly dependent appendage of a woman, it's a short step from there to seeing older and ailing Americans as dependent appendages of society.
October 25, 2014 |
While there is much hopeful news these days on the cancer treatment front, a new report finds that many patients are suffering from unmet financial, emotional, and physical needs. Many struggle with serious anxiety, fatigue, and difficulty working, according to the Cancer Support Community report. As they live longer, patients say they need more help coping with long-term side effects. A significant portion have skimped on medical care and many have cut spending on food to save money.