Research & Treatment News articles

Genetic Counselor Joins Medical Advisory Board

Long before Angelina Jolie gripped the American public’s attention by announcing her double mastectomy due to a genetic mutation, Fight Colorectal Cancer had been educating patients about family histories, plus supporting and reporting research advances in genetics—especially Lynch syndrome. One of our most reliable sources for patient information and webinars  has been Heather Hampel, MS, CGC, a genetic counselor for 18 years, and Associate Director of the Division of Human Genetics at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center. We’re proud to announce that Heather Hampel is now an official member of our Medical Advisory Board. She first became aware of Fight Colorectal Cancer years ago when the late Kate Murphy, (one

Get Off Your Butt: More exercise, less sitting lead to longer lives for CRC survivors

Colorectal cancer patients and survivors who sit less and exercise more actually live longer, according to a carefully designed study published in a recent Journal of Clinical Oncology . Researchers found that cancer survivors who got exercise equaling about 150 minutes per week of moderate to vigorous walking had a 28% lower risk of death from any cause than those who did less than 60 minutes per week of walking. And no matter their job, people who spent 6 or more hours a day of their leisure time sitting (reading, watching TV, computer-anything) had 36% higher risk of death from any cause, than people who sat 3 hours or less

Two Advances in Understanding, Treating Painful Chemo Neuropathy

Recent studies show some promise in understanding chemo-caused neuropathy, and perhaps in using a common medicine to ease the worst symptoms in some people. Study shows neuropathy relief for some using antidepressant  A well-designed clinical study has provided the first evidence that the antidepressant Cymbalta® (duloxetine) can provide some patients with significant relief from peripheral neuropathy caused by chemotherapy. From 20 to 40 percent of cancer patients given neurotoxic chemotherapy–taxanes, platinum-based including Eloxatin® (oxaliplatin), vinca alkaloids, bortezomib–will develop painful peripheral neuropathy (numbness, tingling, burning in hands or feet). If the pain is severe, colorectal cancer patients often have to reduce the dose or stop taking Eloxatin. Even then, this painful condition

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“You Don’t Own Me….” But do you own part of my genes?

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Monday in a case that both sides consider absolutely vital to the future of medical research. The case: Can a company take out a patent on a human gene? Or, as the company Myriad Genetics told the Court, not actually a patent on a gene, but a patent on isolated sections of DNA molecules that they synthetically re-create in the lab to make a test for the gene. Patents were created 150 years ago in the Constitution as temporary protection of new inventions, thus giving economic incentive for inventors. But there is a clear rule that you cannot patent “a product of nature.” During oral

Statement from Carlea Bauman, President of Fight Colorectal Cancer, Regarding the President’s 2014 Budget

I am deeply disappointed that President Obama’s fiscal year (FY) 2014 budget would strip nearly $4 million from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Colorectal Cancer Control Program. The CDC estimates that the loss of funding will mean at least five fewer programs (out of the current 29) working to prevent colorectal cancer. The president’s budget assumes that less federal funding is needed for direct screenings, such as colorectal, breast, and cervical screenings, because most health plans are required to cover these screenings without co-pays or deductibles, and because, starting in 2014, the Affordable Care Act ensures that no one can be denied health insurance because of a

Fight Colorectal Cancer Awards Late Stage Disease Research Grant

Fight Colorectal Cancer and its generous Lisa Fund donors struck a blow against late stage colorectal cancer Tuesday, April 9th at the 2013 annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) in Washington D.C. Top cancer researchers from around the nation applauded as we, along with the AACR, awarded a $50,000 research grant to Pia Morelli, M.D., Ph.D., a post-doctoral Fellow at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. With this grant, Dr. Morelli will use highly specific DNA tests on blood samples to identify those patients most likely to respond to drugs that target the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR), and also to detect

Scientists and Advocates Rally for Medical Research

The annual scientific meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research took a little lunch break on Monday, April 8th in Washington, D.C., while the attendees streamed outside to join a crowd of several thousand gathered across the street for a loud street rally. “When [Congress] sees a grassroots movement rising up from doctors, from scientists, from advocates, and patients, you become impossible to ignore,” cancer survivor Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) told the cheering crowd. (Watch video of the speakers here.) Fight Colorectal Cancer was one of 200-plus organizations who gathered and supported the  Rally for Medical Research, aimed at the politicians who have made, and are making,  decisions about budget cuts. The

Cancer Survivors: Population Explosion Coming

  You think we’ve made a lot of noise during this Colorectal Cancer Awareness month? We’re only going to get louder. On Monday morning, Fight Colorectal Cancer survivors and advocates will ring the opening bell on NASDAQ—representing 1.2 million colorectal cancer survivors in the U.S. who are only going to get louder as our numbers grow. Good news or bad news? Both, really. As Boomers age, more Americans will get cancer—and with better treatment and earlier diagnosis, there will be more cancer survivors. In just 10 years, the number of cancer survivors in the U.S. will increase by nearly a third—to almost 18 million survivors of all types of cancer

Important information to know – from screening to diagnosis for colorectal cancer

Tips From a Member of Our Medical Advisory Board Al B. Benson III, MD, FACP FASCO is Professor of Medicine, Feinberg School of Medicine,  and Associate Director for Clinical Investigations, Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center, Northwestern University One of the nation’s most respected experts in colorectal cancer, Dr. Benson has supported and worked with Fight Colorectal Cancer for years as an active member of our Medical Advisory Board.   Written by Dr. Al Benson, March 18 2013, Chicago, Illinois Although March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, this disease is so frequent yet in most cases preventable that we should be striving every month of the year to make even more people

Too Many Colonoscopies in Over-75s?

A study published in the March 11 JAMA-Internal Medicine suggests that 23 percent of over-75-year-olds have colonoscopies that may be “potentially inappropriate” according to national guidelines which include an upper age limit, as well as how often negative colonoscopies should be repeated. In a retrospective population study, University of Texas researchers looked at billings for 100 percent of colonoscopies performed in Medicare beneficiaries in Texas who were aged 70 years and older who had a colonoscopy in 2008 or 2009. They also examined a nationwide sample of 5% of Medicare claims. Colonscopies were classified as “screening” if records (including claims from 2000 to 2009) did not indicate a diagnosis, or

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