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Category: Oncology | Monthly Briefing

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May 2011 Briefing - Hematology & Oncology

Last Updated: June 01, 2011.

 

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Hematology & Oncology for May 2011. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Cell Phones May Be Tied to Higher Risk of Glioma

TUESDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- Cell phones may be associated with an increased risk of brain cancer, a panel of experts reporting to the World Health Organization (WHO) announced May 31.

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Effect Estimates May Be Inflated in Biomarker Studies

TUESDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- Biomarker effects are often overestimated in highly cited studies compared to the effects reported in subsequent meta-analyses of the same associations, according to a review published in the June 1 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Abstract
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Most Intracerebral Hemorrhage Patients Develop Anemia

FRIDAY, May 27 (HealthDay News) -- Anemia develops in the majority of patients who are hospitalized for intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), and transfusion of packed red blood cells (PRBC) is associated with improved outcome, according to a study published in the May issue of Neurosurgery.

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Sickle Cell Disease Linked to Faster Morphine Clearance

FRIDAY, May 27 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with sickle cell disease (SCD) may require higher and more frequent opioid doses to achieve the required plasma levels due to increased morphine clearance, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of Pain.

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Surgical Delay Associated With Worse Prostatectomy Outcome

THURSDAY, May 26 (HealthDay News) -- Delaying radical prostatectomy by six months or more in men who meet the D'Amico low-risk criteria for prostate cancer is correlated with worse outcomes, according to a study published in the June issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Co-Pay Tied to Noncompliance for Breast Cancer Therapy

THURSDAY, May 26 (HealthDay News) -- Higher prescription co-payments are associated with noncompliance with hormonal therapy for breast cancer, according to a study published online May 23 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Abiraterone Tied to Metastatic Prostate Cancer Survival

WEDNESDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Abiraterone acetate prolongs overall survival among patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer who have received chemotherapy, according to a study published in the May 26 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Contact With Drug Industry Linked to Positive Attitudes

WEDNESDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- The extent of contact that medical students have with the pharmaceutical industry is associated with positive attitudes about marketing, according to a review published online May 24 in PLoS Medicine.

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Patient Navigation May Boost Colorectal Cancer Screening

WEDNESDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Patient navigators may help increase rates of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening among ethnically diverse patients, particularly non-English speaking and black patients, according to a study published in the May 23 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Brisk Walking May Lower Prostate CA Progression Risk

WEDNESDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Brisk walking may help slow disease progression in men diagnosed with clinically localized prostate cancer, according to a study published online May 24 in Cancer Research.

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Heart-Friendly Fatty Acids Linked to Prostate Cancer

TUESDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- High levels of the ω-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid may increase the risk of high-grade prostate cancer; whereas, high levels of trans-fatty acids (TFAs) may reduce the risk, according to a study published online April 24 in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

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Access to Medical Records Not Linked to Increased Anxiety

MONDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- Providing cancer patients with full access to their medical records may increase their satisfaction without increasing anxiety, according to a study published online May 23 in Cancer.

Abstract
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End-of-Life Cancer Care Differs in the U.S. and Canada

MONDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- End-of-life care for patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) differs in the United States and Ontario, Canada, according to a study published online May 18 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Abstract
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Sutent Approved for Rare Pancreatic Cancer

MONDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of Sutent (sunitinib) has been expanded to include people with neuroendocrine pancreatic cancer that is inoperable or has metastasized to other parts of the body.

this type of cancer

Higher Lung Cancer Incidence in Heart Transplant Patients

MONDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of lung cancer among heart transplantation (HT) patients may be higher than in the general population, and this increase is not associated with an increased prevalence of smokers among HT patients, according to a study published in the May issue of the American Journal of Transplantation.

Abstract
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Tai Chi May Prevent Falls and Improve Mental Health

FRIDAY, May 20 (HealthDay News) -- Tai chi may help fall prevention and improve psychological health but has been shown not to be effective in the symptomatic treatment of cancer and rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a study published online May 16 in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Abstract
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Many Medical Students Lack Confidence in Medical Law

FRIDAY, May 20 (HealthDay News) -- The majority of medical students lack confidence in their knowledge and skills across many areas of medical law, according to a study published online May 16 in the Journal of Medical Ethics.

Abstract
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Radiation for Hodgkin's Linked to Increased Mortality

THURSDAY, May 19 (HealthDay News) -- Although breast cancer may be diagnosed earlier, women with a history of radiation therapy (RT) for Hodgkin's lymphoma (HL) are more likely to have bilateral breast cancer, and die due to other causes, according to a study published online May 16 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Abstract
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Awareness of Terminal Cancer Doesn't Impact Survival

THURSDAY, May 19 (HealthDay News) -- Patients' awareness that they have terminal cancer and use of a palliative care facility are not associated with reduced survival time, according to a study published online May 16 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Initial Fecal Occult Blood Test Predicts Cancer Risk

THURSDAY, May 19 (HealthDay News) -- Patients screened for colorectal cancer via immunochemical fecal occult blood test (iFOBT) can be stratified for cancer risk by degree of baseline fecal hemoglobin concentration, according to research published online May 17 in The Lancet Oncology.

Abstract
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Family Cancer Histories Are Not Highly Accurate

WEDNESDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- General population reports on family history for major adult cancers are not very accurate, according to a study published online May 11 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Editorial

Propranolol Effectively Treats Infantile Hemangiomas

WEDNESDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Propranolol appears to be an effective first-line therapy in the treatment of infantile head and neck hemangiomas, according to research published in the May issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery.

Abstract
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High Coffee Intake May Reduce Prostate Cancer Risk

WEDNESDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of advanced or lethal prostate cancer is lower in men who regularly consume coffee, according to a study published online May 17 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Abstract
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Most Nondermatologist Lesion Referrals Are Nonmalignant

WEDNESDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Nondermatologist referrals for skin malignancies include mainly noncancerous lesions, but consulting dermatologists are better able to identify incident malignant lesions in addition to the primary lesion of concern, according to a study published in the May issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

Abstract
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Obesity Linked to Increased Infection After Colectomy

TUESDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Obesity increases the risk of surgical site infection (SSI) after colectomy, which is correlated with an increased cost of treatment, according to a study published online May 16 in the Archives of Surgery.

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No Clear Evidence for Role of Selenium in Cancer Prevention

MONDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Selenium exposure has no clear effect on cancer incidence, and supplementation does not seem to prevent cancer, according to a review published online May 11 in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.

Abstract
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Hydroxycarbamide Effective for Infant Sickle-Cell Anemia

FRIDAY, May 13 (HealthDay News) -- Hydroxycarbamide therapy may be safe and effective for treating infants with sickle-cell anemia, according to a study published in the May 14 issue of The Lancet.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Aromatase Inhibitors Improve Breast Conservation Rates

THURSDAY, May 12 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with clinical stage II to III estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer who undergo preoperative treatment with the aromatase inhibitors (AIs) exemestane, letrozole, or anastrozole have improved surgical outcomes, according to a study published online May 9 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Abstract
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Trial Participation Feasible for Elderly CRC Patients

THURSDAY, May 12 (HealthDay News) -- Elderly and frail patients with colorectal cancer can participate in randomized controlled trials with appropriate design, including reduced drug dosing, according to a study published online May 12 in The Lancet.

Abstract
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Combination Therapy Improves Pancreatic Cancer Survival

WEDNESDAY, May 11 (HealthDay News) -- Pancreatic cancer patients in a trial assessing the combination chemotherapy FOLFIRINOX experienced longer overall and progression-free survival than those on gemcitabine, though the combination treatment is associated with greater toxicity, according to research published in the May 12 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Coffee May Lower Breast Cancer Risk in Older Women

WEDNESDAY, May 11 (HealthDay News) -- A high daily intake of coffee is associated with a significant decrease in the risk of estrogen receptor (ER)-negative breast cancer in postmenopausal women, according to a study published online May 11 in Breast Cancer Research.

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Use of Breast Intensity-Modulated Radiation on Rise

WEDNESDAY, May 11 (HealthDay News) -- The use of intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) rose steeply from 2001 to 2005, substantially increasing the cost of breast cancer radiation, according to research published online April 27 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Abstract
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Medical Education Participants Recognize Funding Bias

WEDNESDAY, May 11 (HealthDay News) -- Although most medical professionals believe that commercial funding of continuing medical education (CME) introduces bias, most are not willing to pay higher fees to offset or eliminate such funding sources, according to a study published in the May 9 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Novel Genomic Predictor Indicates Breast CA Survival

TUESDAY, May 10 (HealthDay News) -- A genomic predictor combining estrogen receptor (ER) status with chemoresistance, chemosensitivity, and endocrine sensitivity may identify patients with newly diagnosed breast cancer with a high chance of survival following taxane and anthracycline chemotherapy, according to a study published in the May 11 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Abstract
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Colonoscopy Repeated Too Soon in Many Older Adults

TUESDAY, May 10 (HealthDay News) -- Screening colonoscopy may be overused in average-risk older adults, and those with better life expectancies are less likely to experience a net burden from colorectal cancer screening and follow-up than those whose life expectancies are low, according to two articles published online May 9 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Abstract - Goodwin
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Abstract - Kistler
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High Acetaminophen Use Linked to Cancer Risk

TUESDAY, May 10 (HealthDay News) -- High use of acetaminophen for four or more days per week for four or more years is associated with an almost two-fold increased risk of incident hematologic malignancies other than chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL), according to a study published online May 9 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Abstract
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Gay Men May Have Increased Cancer Prevalence

MONDAY, May 9 (HealthDay News) -- Sexual orientation may affect cancer prevalence and self-health perception, with poor self-reported health perception more likely in lesbian and bisexual female cancer survivors, and increased cancer prevalence in gay men, according to a study published online May 9 in Cancer.

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True Interval Breast Cancers May Have Aggressive Features

MONDAY, May 9 (HealthDay News) -- True and missed interval cancers are more likely to have a higher grade and stage compared with screen-detected breast cancers, and true interval cancers have additional adverse prognostic features, according to a study published online May 3 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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NSAIDs, Aspirin May Increase Risk of Diverticulitis

MONDAY, May 9 (HealthDay News) -- Men who regularly use aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may have an increased risk of diverticulitis and diverticular bleeding, according to a study published in the May issue of Gastroenterology.

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Afinitor Approved for Rare Pancreatic Cancer

FRIDAY, May 6 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of Afinitor (everolimus) has been expanded to include people with progressive neuroendocrine tumors of the pancreas (PNET) that have spread to other parts of the body or cannot be removed by surgery, the agency said Friday.

this approval

Breast Augmentation Blurs Mammography Results

FRIDAY, May 6 (HealthDay News) -- Mammographic findings fail to differentiate between benign and malignant carcinoma microcalcifications after autologous fat injection for breast augmentation, according to a study published in the April issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

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Racial Disparities Persist in Colorectal Cancer Screening

THURSDAY, May 5 (HealthDay News) -- Racial or ethnic differences in colorectal cancer (CRC) screening persist, especially in blacks and Hispanics, despite expanded Medicare coverage for CRC screening tests, according to a study published in the May issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Abstract
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FISH May Indicate Prognosis of Atypical Spitzoid Tumors

THURSDAY, May 5 (HealthDay News) -- Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis may improve the prognostic evaluation of atypical Spitzoid tumors, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Abstract
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Radical Prostatectomy Beats Watchful Waiting at 15 Years

WEDNESDAY, May 4 (HealthDay News) -- After 15 years, radical prostatectomy appears to be associated with a reduction in the rate of death from prostate cancer as compared to watchful waiting, according to a study published in the May 5 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Lot of Warfarin Tablets Recalled

WEDNESDAY, May 4 (HealthDay News) -- Bristol-Myers Squibb is voluntarily recalling a lot of warfarin sodium (Coumadin) 5 mg tablets after a tablet from one bottle was discovered to have a higher potency than it should, according to a safety alert posted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Structured Exercise Beats Advice Only for Lowering HbA1c

TUESDAY, May 3 (HealthDay News) -- Structured exercise training is associated with a reduction in hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) in patients with type 2 diabetes, while physical activity advice is associated with lower HbA1c only when combined with dietary advice, according to a meta-analysis published in the May 4 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

CT Colonography More Sensitive in Detecting Cancer

TUESDAY, May 3 (HealthDay News) -- Computed tomographic (CT) colonography is more sensitive than optical colonoscopy (OC) in detecting colorectal cancer, especially when both cathartic and tagging agents are combined in the bowel preparation, according to a meta-analysis published in the May issue of Radiology.

Abstract
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Efficacy of Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy Unclear

TUESDAY, May 3 (HealthDay News) -- Though stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) is currently used as a treatment for various solid malignant tumors, there is a lack of evidence confirming its effectiveness and safety, according to a review published online May 2 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Acupuncture Found to Relieve Hot Flashes in Men

MONDAY, May 2 (HealthDay News) -- Acupuncture appears to be quite effective at relieving the hot flashes that are a common side effect of androgen ablation therapy (AAT) in men with prostate cancer, according to research published in the April 1 issue of the International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics.

Abstract
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