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Expert Information from ASCO
Find out what ASCO experts are saying about current topics in cancer and cancer research.
ASCO member Evan J. Lipson, MD, launched a website that offers people with cancer and their families an opportunity to record and preserve audio interviews as a way to share their personal stories with others. Here, Cancer.Net talks with Dr. Lipson to learn more about why he created this website, SeizetheDays.org.
The oncology community is focusing more attention on the differences in the occurrence, frequency, and survival of cancer of different populations in the United States. These populations may include members of minority populations, older adults of any race or background, and those who are poor or geographically isolated. Here, Cancer.Net talks with Derek Raghavan, MD, PhD, to learn more about health disparities in cancer.
As people complete their cancer treatment, they may experience a range of emotions, from relief that treatment is over to apprehension about the future. In some ways, this transition is one of the least understood aspects of the cancer experience. Cancer.Net talked with Lidia Schapira, MD, about coping with the end of active cancer treatment.
Cancer is the leading cause of death for adolescents and young adults age 15 to 39. An estimated 70,000 people in this age group are expected to be diagnosed with cancer in the United States each year. And, while much progress has been made in the fields of cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment, survival rates in 17 of the 23 types of cancers in older adolescents and young adults have not improved since 1990 and, in most of these, since 1975.
To improve cancer care for people in this often-overlooked age group, LIVESTRONG and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) have partnered to launch Focus Under Forty. It is an education curriculum for doctors, designed to build awareness and provide training to address the challenges in treating older adolescent and young adult patients with cancer.
Here, Cancer.Net talks with Archie Bleyer, MD, to learn more about the need for an initiative like this.
Physical therapists are valuable members of the cancer care team. To explain their role, Cancer.Net welcomes Jean O'Toole, PT, MPH, CLT-LANA who has 40 years of experience in physical therapy and has worked at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston since 1992. She has a particular interest and experience in physical therapy for people with cancer.
Cancer clinical trials have led to scientific advances in the prevention, care, and treatment of people with cancer. This knowledge could not have been attained without the participation of patients and their doctors. To understand how patient advocates help advance cancer research, Cancer.Net welcomes George W. Sledge Jr., MD, the 2010-2011 President of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, and Mary Lou Smith, a longtime patient advocate. Dr. Sledge and Ms. Smith have worked together for many years, primarily through the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group, a clinical cancer research organization.
Clinical trials are research studies involving people, and they evaluate whether new treatments are safe, effective, and better than the current standard of care. They may be used to evaluate all aspects of cancer, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and quality of life. A critical component of clinical trials is a process called informed consent. Richard Schilsky, MD, helped Cancer.Net learn more about the informed consent process.
Physician assistants (PAs) are valuable members of the cancer care team. To explain their role, Cancer.Net welcomes Todd Pickard, MMSc, PA-C, medical liaison for the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA), and David Coniglio, MPA, PA-C, president of the Association of Physician Assistants in Oncology (APAO).
Most cervical cancers are caused by infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Although many women infected with the virus eventually clear the infection, some women develop a persistent (lasting) infection, which is a risk factor for cervical cancer. Approval of two HPV vaccines has prompted questions about the use and effectiveness of these vaccines. To help answer common questions, Cancer.Net discussed the HPV vaccine with Maurie Markman, MD. If you have specific questions, talk with your doctor about whether one of these vaccines is appropriate for you.
You may have seen tests advertised on the Internet or elsewhere that can be used to check your risk for specific diseases, including cancer, at home. These tests are called direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic tests. ASCO recently updated its 2003 recommendations for genetic testing to include information on DTC testing, as well as to provide advice to doctors and patients on some of the newer technologies becoming available for cancer screening. To learn about these tests and how to talk with your doctor about genetic testing, Cancer.Net talked with Kenneth Offit, MD, MPH.