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Don’t Forget the Forgotten Cancer: July is Sarcoma Awareness Month

Don’t Forget the Forgotten Cancer: July is Sarcoma Awareness Month

Often times, when people hear the word “cancer”, sarcoma isn’t one that quickly comes to mind. Some may not even know what a sarcoma is--so it’s no surprise that it’s considered the “forgotten cancer.” To bring it to the forefront, July has been declared Sarcoma Awareness Month. Now, more than ever, is the perfect time to learn more about this rare disease. What is Sarcoma? Sarcomas can be broken into two main types: soft tissue sarcomas and bone sarcomas. There are, however, more than 50 different subtypes that fall under these two categories. Soft tissue sarcoma is a broad term...

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UPDATE: Now Colorectal Screening at Age 45?

UPDATE: Now Colorectal Screening at Age 45?

Many of you may have heard that the American Cancer Society (ACS) changed the age of colorectal screening for individuals at an average risk to age 45 at the end of May. But why? While the number of diagnoses for colorectal cancer for adults aged 55 and over has declined over the last 20 years, a disturbing increase of 51% in colorectal diagnoses has been noted for adults under the age of 50 since 1994 (American Cancer Society, 2018). Furthermore, death rates from colorectal cancer in the younger age group are also rising. Based on these statistics, the ACS funded a modeling...

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Don’t Fry Day: Protecting Your Skin from Skin Cancer

Don’t Fry Day: Protecting Your Skin from Skin Cancer

The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated the Friday before Memorial Day as “Don’t Fry Day”–a day to encourage awareness of sun safety in hopes of reducing the rates of skin cancer caused by overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays. With a little planning, you can enjoy the summer sun and protect your skin–not just on this day, but every day. The Importance of Sun Safety Sunshine is enjoyable–but too much exposure to the sun can be dangerous. Overexposure to UV rays can result in more than a painful sunburn. It can also lead to more serious health problems, including...

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3 New Developments to Watch in Prostate Cancer Research

3 New Developments to Watch in Prostate Cancer Research

Prostate cancer research has been an ongoing process of looking into causes, prevention, detection, and treatment of prostate cancer. But with hundreds upon hundreds of published studies out there, how can patients keep up with what’s new? Here are 3 new developments to watch in prostate cancer treatment:  1. Genetic & Genomic Testing Related to Prostate Cancer Genes can play a role in both the development and behavior of prostate cancer. Two types of tests that can be helpful in acquiring information are genetic testing and genomic testing. While they sound similar, they...

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Saying ‘I Do’ Could Reduce Your Risk of Dying from Melanoma

Saying ‘I Do’ Could Reduce Your Risk of Dying from Melanoma

It turns out there’s another bonus to marriage: early skin cancer detection and management. According to a recent study published in JAMA Dermatology, melanomas are more likely to be detected early in married people than people who are single, divorced or widowed. How can being married help reduce my risks? Data suggests that spouses or partners may help identify melanoma that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. The analysis, which included 52,063 people of various marital statuses, found that skin lesions were detected sooner among married people than they were among those who were...

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Dispelling a Cancer Myth

Dispelling a Cancer Myth

Throughout my practice as a radiation oncologist, I have noticed a recurring question that patients ask; “If the surgeon sticks a needle into the tumor or if they expose the tumor to air, will the tumor spread?”  The answer to the question is that realistically, the possibility is very low. In 2015, the Mayo Clinic analyzed 250 patients that had biopsies and found no risk of tumors spreading associated with the procedure. They went further and analyzed 2,000 Medicare patients with pancreatic cancer and found no significant difference in cancer spread between those that had a biopsy...

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The Importance of Exercise – Before, During and After Cancer Treatments

The Importance of Exercise – Before, During and After Cancer Treatments

Did you know that exercise is one of the most important actions you can take during your cancer treatment? It’s true! New research has shown that exercise before, during, and after cancer treatments can: Help alleviate side effects of cancer treatment, such as fatigue, pain, and bone and muscle loss Fuel your appetite Improve your quality of life by reducing stress, anxiety, and depression Reduce the risk of cancer recurrence Help sustain your heart health Maintain or improve your physical abilities Boost your self-image and confidence Help control your weight  This doesn’t mean cancer...

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Is Your Weight Affecting Your Risk of Developing Cancer?

Is Your Weight Affecting Your Risk of Developing Cancer?

It’s no secret that being carrying excess pounds can lead to serious health consequences–but did you know that it can also raise your risk for certain types of cancer? National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) showed that in 2011–2014, nearly 70% of U.S. adults aged 20 years or older were overweight or obese. Research shows that higher amounts of body fat can increase the risk for several types of cancer, including liver cancer, kidney cancer, colon cancer, rectal cancer, endometrial cancer, esophageal cancer, pancreatic cancer, gallbladder cancer, thyroid cancer, cervical...

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Breast Cancer Misconceptions

Breast Cancer Misconceptions

Chances are you or someone you know has a close relative or friend that has been impacted by breast cancer and they may even be receiving breast cancer treatment at our facility in Phoenix. Busting these common myths about breast cancer can help you be informed about what's real when it comes to this disease. Breast Cancer Myth 1: Breast cancer only occurs in women. Though it is true more women are affected by breast cancer, it still can and does occur in men. According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, over 2,000 men are diagnosed annually with breast cancer. It is...

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What I Learned from My First Colonoscopy

What I Learned from My First Colonoscopy

(Note: The recommended age to begin colon cancer screening for those at normal risk as been changed to 45.) I recently turned 50 which meant it was time for my first colonoscopy. Colon cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths and generally when caught early, has a good cancer prognosis. Yet, 30% of adults age 50 and older have not had a colonoscopy to screen for colon cancer! However, getting your first colonoscopy doesn’t have to be scary, and you can prep to make the procedure go as smoothly as possible. Here’s what I learned from my first colonoscopy: Know the colon...

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