Cancer Q&A

When the Doctor Becomes the Patient: One M.D.’s Personal Tale of Survivorship, in his Own Words

Cancer Q&A

Sixteen years ago, Phil Evans, MD, found himself in the unexpected role of patient. He was driving down the road when his cell phone rang. By the end of the conversation, he knew he would lose a kidney to cancer. What he didn’t know then was how his life would be forever changed.

W. Phil Evans, MD<

Dr. Evans, Director of the Center for Breast Care and Professor of Radiology, doesn’t talk much about his diagnosis. It’s not a secret, it’s just that Dr. Evans, who is also the president of the

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Why are Colonoscopies so Important?

Cancer Q&A

By James K.V. Willson, M.D.

Colon cancer is highly curable if caught early, and the best way to detect colon cancer is through a colonoscopy.

There are two main reasons why proper screening for colon cancer is so critical. First, if cancer is found, surgical intervention is most effective when it’s caught early. But even more important is that precancerous polyps—called adenomas­—can be identified by colonoscopies and then removed, which prevents their progression to cancer.

A recent study in The New England Journal of Medicine, appearing just in time for Colon Cancer Awareness Month (March), [...]

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Why is Good Nutrition Important for a Patient with Cancer and What Types of Food Should Be Consumed During Treatment?

Cancer Q&A

By Jennifer Wolfshohl, RD, CSO, LD

Good nutrition is important for everyone, but especially for those undergoing cancer treatments. Cancer itself, as well as its treatments, may affect a patient’s appetite. Treatments also may change your body’s ability to tolerate certain foods and use certain nutrients. Eating well while undergoing treatment can help you:

Tolerate side effects Heal and recover more quickly Keep up your strength and energy Maintain weight Keep your immune system strong Feel better

Eating well means choosing a variety of foods that provide the nutrients you need to maintain your health while fighting cancer. These nutrients include [...]

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Suffering in Silence After Cancer Treatment?

Cancer Q&A

By Jeff Kendall, Psy.D.

Sara is a 55-year-old breast cancer survivor who completed her treatment more than 18 months ago. Instead of feeling completely recovered from her cancer experience, she finds herself constantly worrying about whether her cancer will return. She says the worry can come to her at any time—when she is driving, when she wakes up in the morning, or whenever there is a story about cancer on television. Sara also believes that she is the only post-treatment cancer patient who is experiencing fear of recurrence.

Fear of recurrence is when cancer [...]

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When is Radiation Therapy Used to Treat Lung Cancer?

Cancer Q&A

By Hak Choy, MD

As medical treatments for lung cancer become more advanced, increasingly personalized regimens for patients can be given that may often include radiation therapy.

Radiation therapy may be given as part of a treatment plan in the following ways:

Prior to surgery or chemotherapy to help reduce the burden of tumor. At the same time or immediately after chemotherapy to increase cure rate for localized tumors. After surgery to help prevent recurrence of cancer. Palliatively, or to improve quality of life, if a tumor is causing pain or discomfort (such as shortness of breath from [...]

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Why Do Some Smokers Never Get Lung Cancer, and Others Who Don’t Smoke End Up Getting It?

Cancer Q&A

By Joan Schiller, MD

Everyone knows that smoking is the major cause of lung cancer. In the early 1900s lung cancer was so rare that references to it were typically confined to the medical literature. Since then, the number of people who smoke has risen dramatically, as has the number of patients getting lung cancer, and the disease has become a national—even international—concern.

Epidemiological studies have shown that the more a patient smokes, the higher the risk of getting lung cancer, and that if they stop, the chances of getting lung [...]

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