What Cancer
Can and Can't do
Hearst investment to aid cancer research
Wednesday, September 20, 201 San Francisco Chronicle By Chris Bosak NEW YORK — Hearst announced on Wednesday a $75 million equity inve ...more
Cancer Treatment Can Affect Your Food Preferences
TUESDAY, Sept. 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Cancer therapies often change patients' sense of taste, which may affect what they like to eat, ...more
Aliqopa Approved for Follicular Lymphoma
THURSDAY, Sept. 14, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Aliqopa (copanlisib) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat adults ...more
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There is no place for blame in cancer

There is no place for blame in cancer

Posted By Jennifer Lycette, MD | At 6/27/2017 12:35:39 PM
13 Comments | Post a Comment

8 things doctors want to secretly want to tell their patients

8 things doctors want to secretly want to tell their patients

42 Comments | Post a Comment

Obamacare isn’t a job killer
Peter Ubel, MD | Policy | December 12, 2016

According to many conservative pundits, Obamacare is a job killer. Five days before Obama signed the law, in fact, speaker John Boehner declared that the president was pushing “his job-killing government takeover of health care that will hurt small businesses.” Years after the law was passed, critics continued trumpeting this theme, Ted Cruz calling Obamacare “the biggest job-killer in this country,” and even claiming that “millions of Ameri ...more
Posted By Peter Ubel, MD  At 12/15/2016 12:45:32 PM
13 Comments | Post a Comment

Talk to your doctor about health costs. It can save you money.

Health care is often really costly. And with increasing frequency, a significant chunk of those costs is being passed on to patients in the form of high deductibles, copays, or other out-of-pocket expenses. As a result, millions of Americans struggle to pay medical bills each year.

What’s a poor patient to do?


For starters: They can  ...more
Posted By Peter Ubel, MD At 4/6/2016 9:57:55 AM
662 Comments | Post a Comment

These are the technologies that can help achieve the cancer moonshot

In his State of the Union address in 2016, President Obama pledged a new national effort to find a cure for cancer. This is the cancer “moonshot.” Last year, he announced the launch of the Precision Medicine Initiative — a bold new research effort to revolutionize how we improve health and treat disease. These two strategies together hold the promise of curing cancer or, at least, transforming it into a manageable chronic disease. Negotiations and collaborations are laun ...more
Posted By Bertalan Mesko, MD, PhD At 2/24/2016 5:52:05 PM
22 Comments | Post a Comment

4 ways to handle unsolicited health advice

4 ways to handle unsolicited health advice Toni Bernhard, JD | Patient | December 6, 2015 Here’s the most distressing piece of unsolicited advice I’ve received to date. It showed up in my Inbox two days after I’d completed a course of radiation for breast cancer. The email was in response to an article I’d written about this new, unexpected turn my life had taken; the article included the fact that, at the time, I was in the middle of a course of radiation treatmen ...more
Posted By Toni Bernhard, JD  At 12/7/2015 2:25:17 PM
0 Comments | Post a Comment

The people who will cure cancer are the patients

Sometimes I tell people I’m learning how to treat cancer, and their first question is ‘why haven’t we cured cancer yet?’

We will.  It’s coming.

In medicine, we’re much better at treating infections than cancer, but it wasn’t always that way:

  • We didn’t know washing your hands before delivering a baby was safer for women until 1847.

  • more
Posted By Kevin D. Bishop, MD, PhD At 4/1/2015 12:41:18 PM
266 Comments | Post a Comment

Is it ever appropriate for us to choose the timing of our death?

Human life is a gift.  Death, too, can be a gift.  Is it ever appropriate for us to choose the timing of our death?

Brittany Maynard, 29, was diagnosed with a stage 4 glioblastoma, an aggressive and uniformly fatal brain tumor.  With the blessing of her family and millions of supporters around the world, she ended her life in Portland, Oregon, with a fatal dose of barbiturates prescribed by a physician.  Oregon is one of five states, in addition to Washingt ...more
Posted By Ashine Ash Emrani, MD At 11/26/2014 2:08:54 PM
904 Comments | Post a Comment

The difficult conversation everyone must have

During my first year of medical school, in the last year of my father’s life, his oncologist had a difficult discussion with him and my mother- the decision to become do-not-resuscitate (DNR). I remember my mother was taken aback, my father was relieved and I was deeply saddened.  However, when I got the call that my father may not make it out of the hospital this last time, I was comforted in knowing that I was armed with my father’s wishes.

Unfortunately, th ...more
Posted By Christin M. Giordano, P.A. At 11/5/2014 10:32:25 AM
150 Comments | Post a Comment

7 Ways to Help Your Caregiver

My illness has been as hard on my caregiver-husband as it’s been on me. I know how fortunate I am that he’s stuck around and that he never complains about the extra burdens he’s had to take on. My heart goes out to those of you who don’t have someone to care for you in this way.

This piece covers several ways in which you can ease your caregiver’s burden. It focuses on caregivers who are partners but, unless the care-for-one is a child, these sugg ...more
Posted By Toni Bernhard At 11/5/2014 10:27:13 AM
498 Comments | Post a Comment

Responding to cancer as the surgeon or the survivor

“The plastic surgeons tell me that women who like to swim do much better with reconstruction than with prostheses,” says a young breast surgeon at our weekly breast cancer tumor board, the working conference where we discuss every new breast cancer patient before starting treatment.

There’s a slight note of surprise in her voice; to her, it’s simply another consideration when advising women before mastectomy.


For decades,  ...more
Posted By Carol Scott-Conner, MD At 5/9/2014 2:48:43 PM
1232 Comments | Post a Comment

A struggle against cancer becomes a financial worry

A struggle against cancer becomes a financial worry

Posted By Laura Sander, MD, MPH | Physician  At 3/26/2014 6:53:10 PM
1119 Comments | Post a Comment

A 10-step process to finding a good doctor Val Jones, MD | Physician | March 25, 2014

Val Jones, MD | Physician |


Most people, including physicians, rely on personal references to find a good doctor. But what do you do when you’re far from home, or you don’t know anyone with firsthand knowledge of local doctors? My parents recently asked me to recommend a physician for them in a state where I knew none of my colleagues personally. This is the 10-step process that I used to help them navigate their way to an excellent specialist &m ...more
Posted By Val Jones, MD | Physician | At 3/26/2014 6:49:55 PM
1114 Comments | Post a Comment

The conspiracy of cancer prognosis

Rick Boulay, MD - Conditions |

It should be easy, right? I mean, I am a professional with what feels like eons of training. So how can an oncologist with years of experience fail at perhaps the most important question a patient can ask, ”How long do I have, Doc?” ...more
Posted By Rick Boulay, MD At 3/4/2014 3:27:20 PM
1042 Comments | Post a Comment

Chronic conditions don’t have normal business hours

Patient |

It looks like an airport lounge without the rolling suitcases. There are about 20 of us cancer survivor-types fiddling with our phones or reading the newspaper. A few of us are sipping delicious contrast fluid in preparation for a scan, but most of us are waiting  ...more
Posted By Jessie Gruman, founder and president, Center for Advancing Health At 3/4/2014 3:14:02 PM
738 Comments | Post a Comment

The sense of abandonment from my society

The sense of abandonment from my society

Posted By Robert Fogerty, MD At 12/27/2013 3:40:52 PM
891 Comments | Post a Comment

You Also Can't Keep Your Doctor I had great cancer doctors and health insurance. My plan was cancelled. Now I worry how long I'll live.

Posted By Edie Littlefield Sundby At 11/4/2013 12:44:22 PM
831 Comments | Post a Comment

Weighing Surgeries in Light of a Breast Cancer Gene

When Tracy Dunbrook, a bioethicist in Sherman, Conn., tested positive for the BRCA gene mutation, she was told she had a 40 to 60 percent chance of developing ovarian cancer in her lifetime. Doctors advised her to have her ovaries removed.

She considered going further and having a more
Posted By By JILL WERMAN HARRIS- NY Times At 11/1/2013 1:08:02 PM
523 Comments | Post a Comment

The side effects of cancer treatment can become permanent glitches

Sara was treated for multiple myeloma in the mid-90s and had a stem cell transplant seven years ago. When I asked her husband how she was doing, he said, “Pretty well … just the gift of a little edema in one arm and some neuropathy in her feet.”

On one hand you think, “Hey! That’s great! Those little gifts — those side effects — are a small price to pay.& ...more
Posted By Jessie Gruman, founder and president, Center for Advancing Health At 9/26/2013 11:34:51 AM
827 Comments | Post a Comment

How fear affects cancer survivorship

A recent Wall Street Journal article about how post-traumatic stress syndrome can be caused by cancer and stroke brought to mind the variety of responses many people experience in response to cancer diagnosis and treatment. The lingering intensity of those responses – physical, psychological, social and behavioral – can affect whether and how we attend to the ta ...more
Posted By Jessie Gruman, founder and president, Center for Advancing Health At 8/22/2013 10:01:24 AM
826 Comments | Post a Comment

Is your hospital leader committed to patient-centered care?

Nearly every hospital leader in America will tell you their hospital is all about patient-centered care. Of course, we know this isn’t true in many cases, especially when it comes to hospital capacity management. Though many institutions will deny to its last dying breath that they have any priorities that supercede patient care, nearly all do.

They usually go like this: first priority is high margin surgical cases; second priority is high margin cardiac cases; third pri ...more
Posted By  Robbin Dick, MD | Policy | July 11, 2013  At 7/15/2013 11:02:17 AM
42 Comments | Post a Comment

Life, Interrupted: Making Resolutions

In my darkest days in the oncology unit, I promised myself that if I ever got into remission one day, I would become a stronger, healthier and better version of my precancer self. What could be a bigger inspiration to live a healthier life than surviving cancer? I imagined that once and for all I was going to become the kind of person who meditates every morning, guzzles green juice, does yoga and, on occasion, even runs a marathon.

Before my diagnosis with leukemia, two years ...more
Posted By By SULEIKA JAOUAD At 7/11/2013 4:06:09 PM
355 Comments | Post a Comment

What’s scarier than a colonoscopy?

Colorectal cancer.

Shudder. That’s the knee-jerk response that most of my patients give me when mention of their 50th birthday creeps into the conversation and I reveal that it is time for their screening colonoscopy.

Admittedly, a colonoscopy is not an experience that the overwhelming majority of the human race embraces with excitement and anticipation. Instead, it is a life event that is filled with dread, fear, annoyance, avoidance, and any other unse ...more
Posted By  Sophie M. Balzora, MD | Conditions | May 27, 2013  At 6/2/2013 11:30:18 AM
750 Comments | Post a Comment

When patients rely on financial assistance programs for drugs

I had been laid off a few months when my ulcerative colitis kicked in, and my doctor and I struggled to get it under control.  After trying a variety of medicines, my health continued to deteriorate and I agreed to take Remicade.

Remicade is a potent drug, administered through an IV infusion at the oncology center that comes with a whole host of potential side effects.  The dosage requires an initial cycle of 4 infusions spaced several weeks apart, then a maintenance ...more
Posted By Nancy Meredith At 5/23/2013 3:26:27 PM
36 Comments | Post a Comment

Our Feel-Good War on Breast Cancer

 I used to believe that a mammogram saved my life. I even wrote that in the pages of this magazine. It was 1996, and I had just turned 35 when my doctor sent me for an initial screening — a relatively common practice at the time — that would serve as a base line when I began annual mammograms at 40. I had no family history of breast cancer, no particular risk factors for the disease.

So when the radiologist found an odd, bicycle-spoke-like pattern ...more
Posted By Peggy Orenstein, NYT At 4/28/2013 7:41:04 PM
1 Comments | Post a Comment

Life, Interrupted: A Chat With Suleika

It was just about a year ago when Well readers first met Suleika Jaouad, who at 22 was facing a cancer diagnosis and a potentially lifesaving bone marrow transplant. Her first column “Life, Interrupted: Facing Cancer in Your 20s,” captivated readers and transformed Ms. Jaouad from an unknown writer to a national advocate for young people with cancer.

Although Ms. Jaou ...more
Posted By By TARA PARKER-POPE At 4/18/2013 9:45:00 PM
4 Comments | Post a Comment

For a Sick Friend: First, Do No Harm Conversing with the ill can be awkward, but keeping a few simple commandments makes a huge difference

'A closed mouth gathers no feet." It's a charming axiom, but silence isn't always an option when we're dealing with a friend who's sick or in despair. The natural human reaction is to fee ...more
Posted By Letty Cottin Pogrebin At 4/17/2013 8:57:05 PM
48 Comments | Post a Comment

Beware of hidden agendas in cancer support groups

My husband likes to say, “No good deed goes unpunished.”

I don’t always agree, but sometimes you just can’t argue that concept.  One of my favorite patients, a forty nine year old woman who I treated for head and neck cancer a year ago is a good case in point. Head and neck cancer is on the rise, and is linked, like cervical cancer, to infection with human papilloma virus which is sexually transmitted.  Patients who are treated for this type o ...more
Posted By Miranda Fielding, MD At 4/13/2013 12:52:08 PM
716 Comments | Post a Comment

A Plan To Fix Cancer Care

This year, more than 1.6 million Americans — 0.5 percent of the population — will receive a diagnosis of cancer. Their treatment will consume at least 5 percent of the country’s health care spending, at a cost that is growing faster than all other areas of medicine. Doctors and patients recognize that this is unsustainable and that we need to change the way we deliver care.

But we need help, and that is why more than 20 prominent members of the oncology commu ...more
Posted By By EZEKIEL J. EMANUEL At 3/26/2013 8:12:50 AM
757 Comments | Post a Comment

The evolution of writing during a cancer journey

As we embark on our cancer journey, writing can be a way to help us understand, work out issues, and help us accept and come to terms with our fate. The wide variety of blogs and discussion fora, whether religious or secular in outlook, optimistic or pessimistic in tone, medical or emotional in emphasis, all reflect the richness of our individual lives, circumstances and perspectives.

My cancer journey was no different. As my journey progressed, so did my ‘writing journe ...more
Posted By by Andrew Griffith on March 16, 2013 in Patient At 3/21/2013 8:35:04 AM
719 Comments | Post a Comment

Do most patients with cancer receive proper prescriptions for pain?

To state the obvious: 1) most advanced cancer patients have pain, and 2) we have excellent pain medications which can effectively treat more than 90% of cancer pain. Therefore, most patients with cancer receive proper prescriptions for pain.  Obvious, yes?  True? No.

In Europe, Australia and North America narcotic analgesics are widely available, and frequently prescribed.  While there is access, many patients, particularly those in certain groups such as senior ...more
Posted By James C. Salwitz, MD At 3/5/2013 9:13:48 AM
793 Comments | Post a Comment

'Cancer Prevention Tips' to Avoid

If you want to reduce your cancer risks, be careful what advice you follow. A number of activist groups offer a range of cancer-fighting tips that don't mesh with the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) latest report on cancer trends.

For example, the Breast Cancer Fund explains on its website: "It's clear that our exposures to toxic chemi ...more
Posted By Angela Logomasini, Ph.D. At 2/23/2013 4:01:32 PM
1160 Comments | Post a Comment

Finding Poetry in Cancer

When Kyle Potvin learned she had breast cancer at the age of 41, she tracked the details of her illness and treatment in a journal. But when it came to grappling with issues of mortality, fear and hope, she found that her best outlet was poetry.

How I feared chemo, afraid

It would change me.

It did.

Something dissolved inside me.

Tears began a slow drip;

I cried at the news story

Posted By By TARA PARKER-POPE At 2/5/2013 6:55:27 PM
21 Comments | Post a Comment

6 Tips For Getting Your Doctor to Listen to You

6 Tips For Getting Your Doctor to Listen to You

By Dr. Leana S. Wen


Have you ever gone to the doctor and felt like he wasn’t listening to you?

Have you tried to tell your story, only to have him interrupt with a checklist of questions: do you have chest  ...more

Posted By Dr. Leana S. Wen, M.D. At 2/3/2013 7:36:25 PM
36 Comments | Post a Comment

Deciding About Breast Cancer Chemotherapy

As if being diagnosed with breast cancer wasn’t bad enough, many women with this diagnosis face complicated decisions about what kind of medicine or chemotherapy to take, if any, to reduce their chance of cancer recurrence.  As I discussed in a recent post, the mathematics of such decisions can be hard to comprehend for many patients.  But given that the right choice often depends on patient pre ...more
Posted By Peter Ubel. MD At 1/28/2013 5:35:52 PM
45 Comments | Post a Comment

How to get the most out of your oncology appointments

As a patient, you’re entitled to ask your health care providers anything. In that sense, there are no bad questions.

But some questions will help you get more out of your interaction with your health care providers than others. This advice comes from my experience as a medical oncologist and a cancer survivor.

Before asking your questions, remember that you’re dealing with a human being. Doctors are not gods or saints. We try to remain professional, but ...more
Posted By Naoto Ueno, MD, PhD At 1/7/2013 10:10:48 AM
374 Comments | Post a Comment

Love Doesn't Get Cancer

I'm letting the bad cat out of the bag. My husband has terminal cancer. I don't say that word much, terminal. It sounds defeatist. When the oncologist says there is no cure, or the radiologist says we're just administering palliative care, I try and ignore the offending phrase. But the real truth is there is no cure. The definition of palliative is to treat the symptoms and pain without dealing with the underlying cause. Cancer is a nasty, nasty beast.

But we are l ...more
Posted By Judy Silk At 12/29/2012 8:49:52 AM
41 Comments | Post a Comment

Living With Cancer: The Husks

Before I travel to my mother’s funeral, I need to deliver the husks of a week’s-worth of blister packs to the Indiana University Simon Cancer Center. Every Tuesday I bring the empty packets in a paper bag to be exchanged for the next week’s-worth of pills. After a number of tests, the nurse-administrator of the clinical trial reminds me to down four capsules in the airport and not to eat until I get inside the nonstop plane taking me toward the cemetery, where my father  ...more
Posted By By SUSAN GUBAR,December 7, 2012,  At 12/10/2012 10:11:28 PM
32 Comments | Post a Comment

I admire the strength and determination of cancer survivors

I admire the strength and determination of cancer survivors

43 Comments | Post a Comment

The obstacles patients face in making the right decisions

New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof wrote a heartfelt piece “A Possibly Fatal Mistake” about his college roommate Scott Androes, who recently was diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer. His story illustrates the problem with the current health care system.  It isn’t about the lack of health insurance. It&rsquo ...more
Posted By Davis Liu, MD  At 11/19/2012 9:10:31 AM
19 Comments | Post a Comment

How cancer awareness efforts can backfire

November 8th, 2012in Physician

The American Cancer Society designated an October weekend weekend “Suits and Sneakers Awareness Weekend” as part of its annual Coaches vs. Cancer program t ...more
Posted By by Kenneth Lin, MD At 11/13/2012 1:40:05 PM
59 Comments | Post a Comment

"Chemocation": A Comedian Talks Work & Cancer

I went to Fatburger immediately after finding out my testicular cancer diagnosis. Fatburger is one of my personal stages of grief, don’t hate. The first person I called was my mother (duh), then my best friend (double duh), and finally my boss.

Getting cancer sends a cascade of details into your life you never expected. The time commitment it requires makes it a second job. It’s the worst paying job you’ll ever have. In fact, you’re paying for it!
Posted By H. Alan Scott At 11/7/2012 5:11:35 PM
20 Comments | Post a Comment

Life in Limbo Land: Waiting to get booted from the cancer club

There's nothing like having cancer to make you appreciate the little things in life -- like buying shampoo, running a few miles or being able to forget the address of the hospital where you were treated.

After I was diagnosed with breast cancer in February 2011, I felt like I lived at that hospital. Today -- a year out from treatment -- it's in the rear view mirror, along with the Posted By Diane Mapes At 10/30/2012 12:06:46 PM
611 Comments | Post a Comment

I Got This From You

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I Got This From You


I come from a very small family.

My mother had one brother, David and my father had one sister, Jill.

Uncle David li ...more
Posted By Guest Blogger - Jody Wenke At 10/25/2012 2:42:06 PM
42 Comments | Post a Comment

It’s not all in the genes: How to reduce your risk of cancer

There are an estimated 1,638,910 new cases of the dreadful disease diagnosed in 2012 in the United States, not including non-melanoma skin cancers.

Cancer is not just one disease but is a term that represents more than 100 diseases with different causes. The basic unit of life is cells, and cancer always begins in cells. When the normal process of cell growth and division is altered, these abnormal cells divide without control and can form tumors and invade nearby tissue. It i ...more
Posted By  by Toni Brayer, MD on October 22nd, 2012 in Conditions At 10/25/2012 9:09:25 AM
1058 Comments | Post a Comment

Cancer Is About Relationships -- Get Personal

Life is an emergent property, something more than the sum of its parts, the irreducible product of complex relationships between inanimate components. After all, we are made of the same stuff as the dead matter around us. But how are we so different? An analysis of our bodies the minute before versus the minute after we die would not show many differences in our atomic, molecular and cellular composition. But the relational status at every level of organization would be drastically differ ...more
Posted By Joaquin M. Espinosa, Assoc. Professor of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology, University of Colorado Boulder At 10/23/2012 11:15:11 AM
33 Comments | Post a Comment

Plan your return home after a long hospital stay

Just as preparing for a lengthy hospital stay requires planning, so does returning to home after the hospital. While your condition and strength will shape the best approach for you, my experience following my stem cell transplants may be helpful should you find yourself in this situation.

Before you leave get the information you need.  Most hospitals are pretty good in providing written information sheets on follow-up care, related instructions, and warn ...more
Posted By  by Andrew Griffith on October 15th, 2012 in Patient At 10/18/2012 11:34:48 AM
34 Comments | Post a Comment

A Cancer Patient’s Best Friend

When I was growing up, my dream was to one day become a veterinarian. In fourth and fifth grade, I volunteered every day after school at a veterinarian’s clinic. I didn’t view it as an “internship” — in my mind, I was apprenticing for a certain future in the field. When I was 10, I asked for an incubator for Christmas. By spring, I was carting around a dozen baby chicks in my purple doll stroller. In middle school I walked dogs at the local animal shelter. Bu ...more
Posted By By SULEIKA JAOUAD September 27, 2012, 1:04 pm At 10/8/2012 12:54:24 PM
851 Comments | Post a Comment

Needles or Port? A Cancer Patient Decides

The first question many cancer patients are asked at a doctor’s office or an infusion center is “Do you have a port?” I shake my head no, but add the words “not yet.” To port or not to port: That is the question facing me when I arrive on the hospital hall dedicated to clinical trials.

“They are tiny and rollers,” the nurse says as his fingertips trace the veins on my arms. My part in a trial has begun, but the only “good”  ...more
Posted By By SUSAN GUBAR Sept. 20, 2012, 12:08 pm At 9/24/2012 4:37:07 PM
681 Comments | Post a Comment

5 ways to help make a cancer diagnosis more manageable

Over the past few years, I have had more than my share of navigating my way through the emotional and practical aspects of my treatment for mantle cell lymphoma. While at the back of my mind the broader questions – why me?, how long will I live? – remain, once I got over the initial anger and depression after the initial diagnosis (and after my relapse), I found these practical tips and approaches helped me and my family get through it all:


Posted By  by Andrew Griffith on September 22nd, 2012 in PATIENT At 9/24/2012 9:34:20 AM
23 Comments | Post a Comment

Life, Interrupted: Five Days of Chemo

August 30, 2012, 12:01 am

Day 1
Posted By By SULEIKA JAOUAD At 9/19/2012 12:07:53 PM
18 Comments | Post a Comment

Gratitude for cancer research

It isn't often, as a cancer survivor, that I get to thank those who are working behind the scenes to extend my life and to someday discover a cure for cancer. I had that great opportunity today, thanks to Ellen Stovall and National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship. It was a wonderful privilege and rare treat to sit before a room full of Pfizer researchers and scientists who have dedicated their time and lives to advancing personalized medicine in cancer care.

I shared my  ...more
Posted By BY SUZANNE LINDLEY | SEPTEMBER 16, 2012 At 9/18/2012 10:18:02 AM
55 Comments | Post a Comment

Coping with Liver Cancer - A cancer diagnosis can remind you to treasure life.

September 1, 2012, Volume 3, Issue 13

The ASCO Post

From the moment I had a partial hysterectomy in 2010, I started having unexplained bouts of nausea. My surgeon and even my primary care physician chalked it up to everything from the difficult 6-hour surgery I had just had to anxiety over a move I’d recently made from Connecticut to North Carolina. But after 8 months went by and I still had no relief, I k ...more

Posted By By Margaret Brandt, as told to Jo Cavallo At 9/12/2012 11:56:28 AM
760 Comments | Post a Comment

Helpful things to say to someone who’s sick

It’s easy for those with health problems to complain about what we don’t want to hear others say to us, but I thought it might be helpful to let others know what we wish they would say to us.

“You look so good, but how are you really feeling?”

It’s hard for us to respond to comments like, “You look so good” (or the always dreaded, “But you don’t look sick”) becau ...more
Posted By by Toni Bernhard, JD At 8/27/2012 8:46:42 AM
29 Comments | Post a Comment

Life, Interrupted: Six Ways to Cope With Cancer

People are always giving advice to cancer patients. Whether it is nutritional advice or doctor recommendations or tips on how to quell the nausea that accompanies chemotherapy, just as soon as people hear you are sick they usually want to find a way to help. Most of the advice is welcome and encouraging, though in some cases you’re just not in the mood to hear what someone has learned because you’re too busy treading water.

That’s one reason I hesitate to len ...more
Posted By By SULEIKA JAOUAD At 8/23/2012 10:39:45 PM
852 Comments | Post a Comment

Googling cancer information: Tips from a cancer survivor

When I got my phone call with the diagnosis of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL), my instinct, like so many of us, was to Google. Today, 3 years later, I have learned about what to look for, what to avoid, and how to manage my natural wish to know as much as possible.

The following are suggestions to help others faced with a cancer diagnosis.


Google wisely. Google (and Wikipedia) are a ...more
Posted By by Andrew Griffith At 8/20/2012 11:27:22 AM
3 Comments | Post a Comment

5 questions every patient needs to ask

I once had a patient in whom I found a small breast lump. She was only thirty-two, and the lump was soft, non-tender, and mobile. But it was new. She examined her breasts monthly and was certain that she hadn’t felt it the month before. And she had a family history of breast cancer.


So, I asked myself, what to do? Her age—as well as the lump’s characteristics on exam—made the likelihoo ...more
Posted By Alex Lickerman, MD At 7/30/2012 10:15:11 AM
30 Comments | Post a Comment

What is the goal of palliative care?

Most of us do not want to die in the ICU tethered to tubes — not the quality of life we expect. Yet only 30 percent of us have made arrangements to prevent this from happening. Death and dying is a tough subject for us to broach. Be aware that very few of us will die in our sleep — most have a slow sometimes excruciating decline to death.

As we get older it  becomes important to have a family discussion abou ...more
Posted By by Jeffrey I. Kreisberg, PhD | in Physician  At 7/23/2012 9:56:14 AM
1 Comments | Post a Comment

Skin cancer on the rise in young women -- how to prevent it

By April Daniels Husser


Who doesn't love a sun-kissed glow? These days, however, you're much better off getting your color from a bottle or a great bronzer, because despite all the products with SPF at our disposal -- and all the info out there about the& ...more
Posted By April Daniels Husser At 7/19/2012 5:23:17 PM
284 Comments | Post a Comment

The Things I Wish I Were Told When I Was Diagnosed With Cancer

The Things I Wish I Were Told When I Was Diagnosed With Cancer:


Your relationships are about to change. All of them. Some will get stronger. They will probably not be with the people you would expect. The people you want to handle this well might not be able to for a variety of reasons. Some of the reasons will be selfish. Some of them will be entirely innocent and circumstantial. All of them will be forgivable because no on ...more
Posted By Jeff Tomczek At 7/18/2012 11:53:17 AM
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Things I Wish I Knew Before My Lumpectomy

Before I underwent lumpectomy in 2002, I wish I had known that:

My cancer would return 6 years later.

They were going to inject wires and a blue dye into my breast and it would hurt, and the blue dye would not go away for months after my surgery.

If my cancer ever came back, the fact that I had a Posted By Suzette Lipscomb At 4/19/2012 5:28:47 AM
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