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Articles of Interest

The increasingly longer lives of cancer survivors overall is an enormous source of hope. At the same time, we recognize the importance of quality of life.
Future Directions in Cancer Survivorship and Aging
Coping with Cancer

2019

Adams, Vice Adm. Jerome; Lt. Gen. Nadja West; Vice Adm. Forrest Faison; Lt. Gen Dorothy Hogg. "Tobacco product use threatens military readiness." Stars and Stripes, July 7, 2019.

To our servicemembers:

The surgeons general of the Air Force, Army, Navy, and United States are united in our concerns about high levels of tobacco product use among uniformed servicemembers.  Tobacco product use is a threat to the health and fitness of our forces and compromises readiness, the foundation of a strong national defense.

Kempe, Yaabelle. "E-cigarette users seeking help in lonely struggle to quit vaping." Boston Globe, July 7, 2019.

Kyle, a rising senior at BU, has tried to quit vaping. His last attempt was unsuccessful and he found himself switching to Smok Novo (above) instead of Juul.

Connor hated feeling like a slave to the slender metal device in his pocket. That’s why the rising junior at Boston College recently wrote his first-ever Reddit post on the page “QuittingJUUL,” a virtual space populated by more than 800 others who are also battling e-cigarette addiction.

Harrison, Pam. "Cancer Deaths Cost U.S. Billions in Lost Earnings Each Year." MedPage Today, July 3, 2019.

Premature death from cancer each year costs the American economy a staggering amount in lost earnings, new research found.

In 2015, 8.7 million years of life were lost due to early cancer death, amounting to $94.4 billion in lost earnings, reported Farhad Islami, MD, PhD, and colleagues from the American Cancer Society in Atlanta.

Douglas R. Lowry, MD. "Future Directions in Cancer Survivorship and Aging." Coping with Cancer, July/August 2019.

Declining cancer deaths … More survivors living longer … An exciting time in cancer research and care … 

Although these statements may sound like echoes of what we’ve been saying for several years, they’re not. The landscape of cancer research and care is constantly changing – and for the better. 

Loftus, Eileen Glanton. "Let's End HPV-related Cancers: A Congressional Briefing." American Association for Cancer Research, June 28, 2019.

Every two minutes, a woman somewhere in the world dies of cervical cancer.

That harrowing statistic, shared by Anna R. Giuliano, PhD, founding director of the Center for Immunization and Infection Research in Cancer at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, reflects a great frustration in public health. There is a vaccine that prevents infection with the virus that can cause cervical cancer and several other cancer types, yet worldwide, not enough people are taking advantage of it.

Boyles, Salynn. "Big Study to Explore Long-Term Impact of Vaping, Pollution." MedPage Today, June 21, 2019.

The long-term impact of vaping on the lungs and the impact of early-life air pollution exposures will be among the key focuses of a first-of-its kind federally funded, longitudinal study of lung health among millennials.

Researchers from Northwestern Medicine in Chicago, in partnership with the American Lung Association, plan to follow 4,000 healthy adults from the ages of 25 to 35 in an effort to gain further insights into the causes of chronic respiratory diseases common in later life.

When the 17-year-old boy arrived at Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, his entire jaw was cracked and a chunk of the bone had been completely shattered. Several of his teeth were missing and there was a hole in his chin.

Glimcher, Laurie H.. "Ending the Long Reach of Tobacco." The Boston Globe, June 13, 2019.

Many of us know someone whose life was cut short by tobacco, and their stories are heartbreaking. What makes them even more so is that, in many cases, it didn’t have to happen. As the leading cause of preventable death, smoking causes 1 in 5 of all deaths in the United States, totaling more than 480,000 annually. Tobacco is also linked to about one-third of all cancers in the United States, including cancers of the pancreas, bladder, kidney, mouth, and throat, as well as the lung. Even with all of the recent advancements in cancer research and care, these remain some of the most lethal and difficult cancers to treat.

Bankhead, Charles. "More Evidence Links Body Fat with Prostate Cancer." MedPage Today, June 12, 2019.

Increasing body fat accumulation significantly raised men's odds of developing advanced and fatal prostate cancer, data from a large prospective study of men in Iceland showed.

Higher concentrations of visceral and thigh fat increased the odds of aggressive or fatal prostate cancer by 30%-40% as compared with leaner men. The prostate cancer risk associated with increased visceral fat accumulation carried over to men who had a lower BMI, reported Barbra A. Dickerman, PhD, of the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, and colleagues.

CHICAGO–In patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), both current and former smoking is associated with worse treatment outcomes in treatment-naïve patients. A history of smoking is associated with molecular and cytogenetic risk factors, suggesting that it is tied to biological characteristics of the tumor rather than smoking-related comorbidities.

Collins, Frances. "Ultra-Processed Diet Leads to Extra Calories, Weight Gain." NIH Director's Blog, May 21, 2019.

If you’ve ever tried to lose a few pounds or just stay at a healthy weight, you’ve likely encountered a dizzying array of diets, each with passionate proponents: low carb, low fat, keto, paleo, vegan, Mediterranean, and so on. Yet most nutrition experts agree on one thing: it’s best to steer clear of ultra-processed foods. Now, there’s some solid scientific evidence to back up that advice.

One of lung cancer’s most lethal attributes is its ability to trick radiologists. Some nodules appear threatening but turn out to be false positives. Others escape notice entirely, and then spiral without symptoms into metastatic disease.

On Monday, however, Google unveiled an artificial intelligence system that — in early testing — demonstrated a remarkable talent for seeing through lung cancer’s disguises.

Hsiang, Esther Y.; Shivan J. Mehta; Dylan S. Small; Charles A.L. Rareshide; Christopher K. Snider; Susan C. Day; Mitesh S. Patel . "Association of Primary Care Clinic Appointment Time With Clinician Ordering and Patient Completion of Breast and Colorectal Cancer Screening." Jama Network, May 10, 2019.

Cancer is a leading cause of mortality in the United States.  Appropriate cancer screening can be effective in decreasing both morbidity and mortality by detecting and treating cancers at an earlier stage.  However, underuse of cancer screening tests is common.  For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that among patients who meet guideline recommendations, approximately 37% of adults have not been screened for colorectal cancer, and 28% of women have not been screened for breast cancer.

Mike Fillon. "Greater support and resources needed for cancer survivors returning to work." Wiley Online Library, April 26, 2019.

A new Canadian study published in Psychooncology (2019;28:792‐798. doi:10.1002/pon.5021) reports that cancer survivors face a range of problems in the workplace, including stigma and misperceptions about their abilities; a higher risk of losing their job compared with healthy controls; a lack of understanding regarding their work abilities, productivity, and reliability; and costs associated with their continued employment.

Zraick, Karen; Emily S. Rueb. "Walgreens Is Latest to Raise Vaping (and Smoking) Age to 21." The New York Times, April 23, 2019.

The drugstore chain Walgreens will stop selling tobacco products to customers under 21, the company announced on Tuesday.

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