Archive for the ‘Cancer Patient Resources’ Category

Find the Best Doctor: The Importance of an Expert Surgeon

Saturday, October 13th, 2012

Lego Surgeon“Dear Doctor, have you done this before?”

In the midst of this UMCCC breast cancer article appears a caution with wider application:

“Sentinel lymph node biopsy should be done by an experienced, qualified breast surgeon. Initial studies show…most surgeons need to do 20-30 sentinel node procedures before obtaining accurate results. More recent studies, however, show that for surgeons using a well standardized technique, achieving accurate results occurs in a much shorter time period with most failed results occurring in the first few cases. This experience usually occurs during an accredited residency or fellowship at an institution that does a large number these cases.” [This is confusing. I presume the last sentence refers to gaining the “experience" required to succeed, not the “experience” of failures incurred in “the first few cases” of surgeons practicing at accredited specialized institutions or departments.]

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Breast Cancer Treatment Options and Alternatives

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

pink ribbon for breast cancer

Curious about your various treatments options for breast cancer?

Article: Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy for Breast Cancer: What You Need to Know

Written by: Jessica M. Bensenhaver, MD, Kathleen M. Diehl, MD and Alfred E. Chang, MD

From: University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center Ann Arbor, Michigan (more…)

Triple Threat Approach Claims to Reduce Infections

Saturday, October 6th, 2012

red crossThe Undying Soul: Speak up for yourself, your adult relative or friend.

According to research, the “‘Triple-threat’ approach reduces life-threatening central line infections in children with cancer” (Pediatrics). Pediatrics hospitals can dramatically reduce infections in young patients. Critical to achieving a prevention rate of 20% over two years are these three steps, according to a new Johns Hopkins Children’s Center study:  (more…)

Oncotype DX Colon Cancer Assay: When To Proceed

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

group of women doctorsDetermining when to proceed with colon cancer treatment is one of the most difficult decisions a patient and his or her loved one may ever make.  In this ecancer.org article, Professor David Kerr, from the Oxford Clinical Trials Research Unit (Oxford, UK), provides ecancerTV an interview describing the “Oncotype DX Colon Cancer Assay.” (more…)

Innovation and Medicine: The Importance of Creativity and Expertise

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

InnovationIt is surprising to realize that innovation is almost a dirty word among some circles of medicine. There has been an ongoing attempt by academic centers to claim the intellectual high ground on treatment care options/decisions, which in essence means: “Follow our protocols. Individual deviation is too risky and beyond your expertise…” (more…)

Cancer Cells: The Miracles and Glitches of Biology

Saturday, September 8th, 2012

Breast cancer cellsOne of the most often asked questions in my day-to-day practice is this: “Doctor, what makes my cells stop working the way they should…?”  This question usually follows after I have explained that the reason they are anemic or deficient in platelets or white cells, or have cancer, is because some “malfunction” has developed in the way their cells normally work.

We are mostly all born into a healthy body that just naturally does what it does: digest food, excrete waste, pump blood, metabolize energy, see, hear, move etc.  When one stops to think about it, which one rarely does if she/he hasn’t been to medical school, one realizes that 99.9999% of what goes on in our bodies is involuntary. It all happens naturally by a design that becomes more unfathomable the more one delves into it. (more…)