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Scared, angry, inept – that’s me, the carer

21/10/2017 Ian Whitwham 0

As Ian Whitwham recovered from a stroke, his wife was diagnosed with cancer. In his new, reversed role, he charts the rollercoaster of her illnessI care. I’ve swapped roles with my wife and become a “carer”. When I had a stroke she was the “carer”. Now…

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Study investigates treatment regret among prostate cancer survivors

20/10/2017 Charlie Schmidt 0

Surveys of over 900 men who were diagnosed with prostate cancer in the 1990s found that approximately 15% had some regret over their treatment choices. Study authors encourage doctors and patients to have frank and thorough discussions about about the risks and benefits of various forms of treatment for prostate cancer.

The post Study investigates treatment regret among prostate cancer survivors appeared first on Harvard Health Blog.

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Cancer patients need more than survival | Fay Schopen

05/10/2017 Fay Schopen 0

The hunger for ‘miracle cures’ has skewed our understanding of medical research. We need greater emphasis on quality of lifeThe horror of a cancer diagnosis is unforgettable. It is the grimmest and most personal bad news. The solemnness of the doctor; …

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Can even moderate drinking increase the risk of cancer?

02/10/2017 Luisa Dillner 0

New research argues that just a small glass of wine a day increases the risk and that ‘responsible drinking’ targets are misleading

Alcohol may be a social lubricant but WHO and Public Health England say it can cause cancer. Last week the alcohol industry was accused of downplaying the link between alcohol and the increased risk of seven cancers: mouth, throat, oesophagus, liver, breast and colon. A research paper in Drug and Alcohol Review found that “responsible drinking” information funded by the alcohol industry tends to push the message that only heavy drinking increases the risk of these cancers. But the paper says the risk starts with low levels of drinking, even though the risk itself is low. So is the recommended number of alcohol units a week – 14 – too high?

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Danny Baker: ‘I’m not someone for brooding indoors and then doing a think piece’

01/10/2017 Alex Clark 0

Danny Baker has spent years delighting listeners with anecdotes and opinions on everything from football to BBC bean counters. He talks to Alex Clark about battling cancer – and the establishment. Plus: an extract from his new book, Going On The Turn

Danny Baker says: “Couldn’t be better,” when our waiter asks him how he is today. “Giving off sparks!” And, with the exception of the months he spent undergoing intense and gruelling treatment for the cancer of the head and neck that was diagnosed in 2010, the odds on him replying in precisely the same way on nine days out of 10 are high. The radio presenter, comedy writer and one-time punk correspondent for the NME, was last contestant in and first voted out (“a tremendous joke in and of itself”) of the last I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! This excoriator of the “pin-headed weasels” and bean-counters of his radio employers BBC London, and chronicler of his upbringing in Bermondsey, south London, has one main aim in life: “To live for pleasure alone.”

“And I think I have,” he says. “I came out of the womb doing it.” Partly, he laughs, because it was his birth, in the summer of 1957, that led to his family – mother, father and elder brother and sister – securing a brand-new council house on an estate he loved so much that he’d panic if he thought about the prospect of moving. “I thought I was partially responsible. My mum used to say: ‘You did this, our lovely garden and a bathroom.’ I grew up bullet proof.”

Turning 60 is the first birthday to give you pause, it really is

We’ve always treated everything like a roundabout: go straight on. And I think that’s very healthy

The cure for my cancer was severe. I couldn’t even take a sip of water

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Immunotherapy has changed cancer medicine. But it’s no miracle cure | Ranjana Srivastava

26/09/2017 Ranjana Srivastava 0

Immunotherapy provides good reason for optimism and even awe. Unfortunately, it does not work in the majority of patients

She is grunting from the work of breathing. Perched at the edge of a chair, she hunches over her walking frame in order to find a comfortable position to speak the few sentences she can manage. Having watched her decline, I estimate she has weeks to live.

Slowly and painstakingly, she removes a paper buried in her bag. I can’t help noticing that this task consumes so much of her energy that her son has to unfold the newspaper article.

Related: Cancer treatment: sorting the good news from the hype

Related: We’re more likely to get cancer than to get married. This is a wake-up call | Ranjana Srivastava

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Exposed: ‘secretive’ NHS cost-cutting plans include children’s care

25/09/2017 Caroline Davies 0

Documents reveal £5m cuts in South Gloucestershire will include cancer diagnostics and treatment for children with complex needs

Cancer diagnostics and treatment for children with complex needs are among services earmarked for cost-cutting plans considered by the NHS to plug a funding gap, according to documents seen by campaigners.

The plans, by South Gloucestershire clinical commissioning group and released under a freedom of information request, show that waiting targets for non-urgent operations are also due to be relaxed under the “capped expenditure process” (CEP) as the health service seeks to balance its books in the current financial year.

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HPV screening better at detecting cervical cancer than pap smear, trial shows

Results come less than three months before five-yearly HPV test replaces the two-yearly pap test in Australia

Australia’s new national cervical cancer screening program has received a boost, with a large clinical trial showing screening for the human papillomavirus is significantly better at detecting potential precancerous cells than the traditional pap smear.

“We found that the HPV test was substantially more effective at picking up high-grade abnormalities compared to the pap test,” said Prof Karen Canfell, director of research at Cancer Council New South Wales.

Related: Australian women not having regular pap tests and dying from cervical cancer

Related: Alcohol is a direct cause of seven ​​forms of cancer, finds study

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Tessa Jowell in battle against brain cancer, family reveals

17/09/2017 Jessica Elgot 0

Former culture secretary was diagnosed four months ago and has pledged to help people with cancer live longer and better

Dame Tessa Jowell has been battling brain cancer for the past four months, her family has revealed.

The former Labour culture secretary’s illness was revealed in an Instagram post by Ella Mills, the food blogger and cookbook author Deliciously Ella. She posted a picture of Jowell on her 70th birthday and described the past few months as “some of the hardest of our lives”.

Thank you for so much love and support on my birthday. More people living longer better lives with cancer is my birthday pledge pic.twitter.com/VPvvFrwDQS

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Victoria Derbyshire: ‘After cancer, I’m squeezing life out of every second’

17/09/2017 Kate Kellaway 0

Renowned for her tenacious journalism, the BBC broadcaster dealt with her cancer treatment by documenting every moment. Here she talks about the power of positivity and why she got a dog

On Monday 27 July 2015, at 4.35am, Victoria Derbyshire was in her kitchen, with the kettle on, Googling “inverted nipple” before leaving home to present her daily BBC2 current affairs programme. Google came up with a list of explanations, one of which was breast cancer. It is usually best to ignore online diagnoses but, in this instance, her preliminary search was right. By 29 July she was having a biopsy, by 31 July it was confirmed she had breast cancer, and on 24 September she had a single mastectomy. And at this point she did something unusual: she made a video of herself, sitting up in her hospital bed in an NHS gown, after coming round from the operation. Pale, then suddenly smiling, she held up two pieces of card. On one, she had written: “THIS MORNING I HAD BREAST CANCER.” Then she showed us the second: “THIS EVENING I DON’T!”

Watching the video, you notice she talks as if she feels she has had a narrow escape. She takes little breaths between words, as though resisting speechlessness. “Today I had a mastectomy and I feel – all right – I can’t believe it.” There is relief in her pronunciation of that slightly questioning “all right”. She looks from side to side, as if bad news might be lurking in the room. She describes the NHS team as inspiring, shows us the black arrow inked on to her right wrist (to make sure the surgeons did not operate on the wrong breast), and has an impressive shot at explaining breast reconstruction – the tucking in of the implant, the pulling down of skin, the hammocky mesh over which skin will eventually grow – although she casts around for the word “reconstruction”, almost lost to morphine.

Losing your hair makes you look like a cancer patient. I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me

Related: You need a lot of luck, not just positivity, when cancer strikes | Deborah Orr

Related: Hair loss may be the most visible side effect of chemo, but it is not the worst | Fay Schopen

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Victoria Derbyshire: ‘After cancer, I’m squeezing life out of every second’

17/09/2017 Kate Kellaway 0

Renowned for her tenacious journalism, the BBC broadcaster dealt with her cancer treatment by documenting every moment. Here she talks about the power of positivity and why she got a dog

On Monday 27 July 2015, at 4.35am, Victoria Derbyshire was in her kitchen, with the kettle on, Googling “inverted nipple” before leaving home to present her daily BBC2 current affairs programme. Google came up with a list of explanations, one of which was breast cancer. It is usually best to ignore online diagnoses but, in this instance, her preliminary search was right. By 29 July she was having a biopsy, by 31 July it was confirmed she had breast cancer, and on 24 September she had a single mastectomy. And at this point she did something unusual: she made a video of herself, sitting up in her hospital bed in an NHS gown, after coming round from the operation. Pale, then suddenly smiling, she held up two pieces of card. On one, she had written: “THIS MORNING I HAD BREAST CANCER.” Then she showed us the second: “THIS EVENING I DON’T!”

Watching the video, you notice she talks as if she feels she has had a narrow escape. She takes little breaths between words, as though resisting speechlessness. “Today I had a mastectomy and I feel – all right – I can’t believe it.” There is relief in her pronunciation of that slightly questioning “all right”. She looks from side to side, as if bad news might be lurking in the room. She describes the NHS team as inspiring, shows us the black arrow inked on to her right wrist (to make sure the surgeons did not operate on the wrong breast), and has an impressive shot at explaining breast reconstruction – the tucking in of the implant, the pulling down of skin, the hammocky mesh over which skin will eventually grow – although she casts around for the word “reconstruction”, almost lost to morphine.

Losing your hair makes you look like a cancer patient. I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me

Related: You need a lot of luck, not just positivity, when cancer strikes | Deborah Orr

Related: Hair loss may be the most visible side effect of chemo, but it is not the worst | Fay Schopen

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A cancer diagnosis at any age is hard, but it’s the last thing on any teenager’s mind | Leena Sirpal

15/09/2017 Leena Sirpal 0

I don’t think I realised how seriously ill I was. And I don’t know how I would have got through chemotherapy without the support of my family

“Am I going to lose my hair?” was my first question for my doctor when he told me the news. I didn’t really know what was going on, but I knew it was serious and life-threatening. I was in shock, but seeing my mum cry made me even more upset. Getting a cancer diagnosis at any age is hard, but so much more so when you’re a teenager. I was on the edge of adulthood, but not yet fully equipped to handle it – I was preoccupied with friends, school and becoming my own person.

Related: Nick Clegg and wife say telling son he had blood cancer was ‘toughest thing’

Related: As cancer progresses some patients weep, some get angry and others are bewildered | Ranjana Srivastava

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